According to the CSO’s Residential Property Price Index October 2018, residential property prices increased by 8.4% nationally in the year to October. This compares with an increase of 8.5% in the year to September and an increase of 11.7% in the 12 months to October 2017.
In Dublin, residential property prices rose by 6.3% in the year to October, with house prices rising by 6.6% and apartments by 5.7%. The highest house price growth in Dublin was in Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown at 8.2%, while the lowest growth was in South Dublin at 5%.
National residential property prices in Ireland, excluding Dublin, were 10.6% higher in the year to October, with house prices up by 10.3% and apartments by 14.5%. The region outside of Dublin that saw the largest rise in property prices was the Mid-West at 21.5%, while the smallest was recorded in the Mid-East at 8.3%.
Overall, the national index is 17.6% lower than its highest level in 2007. Dublin residential property prices are 20.1% lower than their February 2007 peak, while residential property prices in the rest of Ireland are 22.7% lower than their May 2007 peak.
Property prices nationally have increased by 83.8% from their trough in early 2013. Dublin residential property prices have risen 98% from their February 2012 low, whilst residential property prices in the rest of Ireland are 77.9% higher than at the trough, which was in May 2013.
Eamon Hetherington, Director at Cork-based Property Developers GPD, commented on these findings: “Looking at the final Residential Property Index of 2018 gives us a clear picture of where we’re coming from over the last 12 months, but also a good indication of where we’re going and what we need to do to get there.
“Prices are still increasing, albeit at a slower rate. But the delivery of new housing stock is not increasing in line with these rises.
“At the end of the day the price of land is still too expensive. The cost of providing essential services to sites, coupled with increasing material and labour costs, continue to drive up the price of the much sought after and much needed family home.
“The cost of land is slowing development, both in terms of the base cost of the land, and the cost of bringing services to the site. Another factor at play, is the slow timelines by Local Authorities to sign the contract for Part V Social and Affordable, housing projects.
“We now need a sustained approach, starting with the overhauling and improvement of procurement routes, coupled with a detailed understanding of Government’s plans for building in Ireland, so that the industry can plan ahead. Ireland’s construction industry needs to innovate and embrace the lean, as well as modularisation and off-site manufacture, to become smarter and ultimately, achieve more for less.
“Everyone has a role to play is fixing our broken housing market.
“For our part, in the construction business, we are determined to address the skills shortage we face, by putting in place measures to attract people back into the industry, so that we have the workforce to deliver the properties that are so desperately needed. A prime example of this is the programme of roadshows that has been rolled out by the Construction Industry Federation in schools around the country, to promote a career in construction and to extol the benefits of completing a trade.
“With the digital age now upon us, we need to change the view on the types of roles available in the sector and we must embrace technology, which will, in turn, entice the younger generation into the industry to fulfil these more computerised and technology-based needs.
“In recent years a huge number of professional and tradespeople in the construction sector either left the industry and retrained in another sector or worked abroad. This has been further compounded by the limited apprentice programmes in the industry.
“Tradespeople will continue to be the cornerstone of the industry, so we need to focus our attention on the current and future workforce. We must think about a less academic route to the building sector and consider time served by apprentices once again – there is no doubt that this will prove challenging due to limited resources and continued pressure on margins. However, we must find a way. A multi-trade option definitely has merit and should be considered, as a person with the skills to not only build, but also tile and plaster would have a distinct advantage in our industry, particularly for SMEs and the residential sector.”