By Cate McCurry, PA
An upsurge of private landlords selling their properties nationally has increased supply levels and tempered price rises in some areas, a survey has found.
Up to 30 per cent of houses for sale in some areas of Dublin are now due to landlords selling their additional properties, with knock-on effects for the rental market, the Q2 REA Average House Price Index found.
Actual selling prices in Dublin postcode districts have risen by 2.5 per cent in the past three months, to an average of €493,333, but the annual rate of increase has dropped two percentage points to 8 per cent on the previous survey.
However, in North County Dublin areas such as Swords, Skerries and Balbriggan, prices have risen by almost treble that amount to 22 per cent annually, as Dubliners seek a more affordable home within the county.
The REA Average House Price Survey concentrates on the actual sale price of Ireland’s typical stock home, the three-bed semi, giving an accurate picture of the second-hand property market in towns and cities countrywide.
The price of a three-bedroomed semi-detached house across the country rose by 2.9 per cent over the past three months to €286,611, representing an annual increase of 13 per cent.
Some 58 per cent of all purchasers in the past quarter were first-time buyers, according to REA, a figure which rose to 78 per cent in Dublin as people with mortgage approval scrambled to get on the housing ladder.
REA spokesperson Barry McDonald said: “At around the €410,000 mark, second-hand homes are coming to the market in greater numbers in areas like Lucan and Bray in Co Wicklow.
“This is taking the urgency out of the market in these locations, as buyers feel that they have some options. However, this easing is only being seen in areas where there are new homes.
“Elsewhere supply remains a major issue. Interest rate rises and inflation fears are giving buyers some pause for thought but neither of these issues can temper the pent-up demand of mortgage-approved buyers.
“However, the biggest factor on the market in the last quarter is the increasing proportion of sales from private landlords, and the effects that it is having on the market.”
One Dublin agent warned of the knock-on effect on the country’s workforce of the shrinking rental market as 30 per cent of his vendors are now private landlords selling up.
Anthony McGee, of REA McGee in Tallaght, said: “The biggest issue at the moment is the sheer numbers of people seeking accommodation, combined with private investors leaving the market.
“We are finding that landlords feel that the market has peaked, and taxation and legislation are influencing their decisions to sell.
“As a result, we have people leaving the country because they cannot find accommodation when their landlord decides to sell, and this will affect the available workforce in the long term.”
In North County Dublin, prices have risen by 6 per cent to €412,000 in the last quarter as buyers compete for more affordable properties, with 83 per cent of sales in the area to first-time buyers – the highest urban figures reported in the country.
Cities outside the capital saw a 3.3 per cent rise to an average selling price of €298,750.
Commuter counties saw prices increase by 2.3 per cent – a jump of €6,833 to €311,833.
In the rest of the country, where prices rose 3.2 per cent to €202,897, the survey found that one in every three buyers were from outside the county, with 50 per cent first-time purchasers, as new working conditions enable a rethink on home bases.