Irish

Saturday 2 August 2014

Pent up demand drives house building up 132pc in first four months

Published 24/06/2014|08:43

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PENT up demand has helped drive house construction levels across the country up 132pc in the first four months of the year.

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The figures, although off very low bases, were included in the National Housing Construction Index, and compare with the same period last year.

Pent up demand drove construction in the capital, mainly, where 676 housing starts were recorded out of a total of just over 3,500 nationwide in the four months.

The index is based on information gathered from local authorities on planning applications and commencement notices – the latter is a statutory requirement.

In Westmeath, for example, there has been a 532pc hike in commencement notices compared with last year.

Planning applications are up 19pc nationally, said Link2Plans which produces the index.

“The 132pc increase in the number of commencement notices for March and April continued the positive trend shown in the first two months of 2014, but there has been a fall from the phenomenal increases of 192pc seen in January and February of 2014,” said Danny O’Shea, managing director of Link2Plans.

“This decrease can be attributed to the rush at the beginning of the 2014 to get commencement notices lodged before the new building regulations came into force on 1s March, and we would expect this downward trend to continue into the second quarter of 2014 but overall we would still anticipate an increase year on year.”

“Generally, the economic outlook for the construction sector is quite positive at the moment with a recent report showing a three-fold increase in the number of jobs on offer in the construction and property sector in Ireland during May 2014, when compared to May 2013 as well as strong performance of Ulster Bank Construction Purchasing Managers Index," he added.

Irish Independent

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