House prices plummet to 58pc of peak asking price as market continues to fall
ASKING prices for houses have dropped a further 3.5pc in recent months, a report shows.
The average price being sought by sellers is now just under €195,000, said property website Daft.ie.
This compares to €366,000 at the peak of the property boom in 2007.
The report is based on asking prices - between June and September - rather than actual selling prices, for which there is no current record.
Ronan Lyons, economist with Daft.ie, said all the indicators suggested there would be no immediate reversal in the continued downward plunge of house prices.
"Conditions in the property market remain weak," he said.
Mr Lyons said the lack of mortgages being approved by banks was now compounding the problem of oversupply in the housing market as well as a skewed relationship between rent and house prices.
"Without a change in strategy by the banks, the outlook for house prices remains tough for the rest of the year, with a market of many sellers but few buyers able to borrow," he added.
While prices continue to drop, the rate of the fall slowed slightly in recent months compared to the 5pc decrease between March and June.
Almost 60,000 properties on the market remain unsold, according to Daft.ie.
Houses stay on the market for an average of eight months, although this varies from four months in Dublin to 13 months in Connacht.
In Dublin, asking prices fell on average by 4.5pc over the past three months, with prices now 55pc below the peak in some parts of the capital.
Asking prices in Cork and Waterford cities fell by up to 5pc, while in Limerick city prices fell by more than 8pc.
Bucking the trend, Galway city saw asking prices rise by around 1% over the summer, but they are still 18% lower than a year ago.
Outside the main cities, asking prices also jumped noticeably in Carlow and in Monaghan at periods over the past year.
A separate report for property website myhome.ie shows asking prices declined by 3.2pc over the past three months.
Its study showed average prices at €241,000, down 42pc since their peak. Report author Annette Hughes, of DKM economic consultants, said would-be buyers remain cautious because of international and domestic concerns.
"On the one hand they are worried about the euro financial crisis and its impact on economic and employment growth prospects," she said. "While on the other they are concerned about household finances as well as continuing difficulties securing mortgage finance.
"But uncertainty around the contents of the forthcoming budget is the current big issue for households."