Dublin 16: D16 homes in good condition still in high demand in
In Dublin 16, described by Carole Ross of Sherry Fitzgerald as "the most suburban suburb", 2015 started off busy, with buyers keen to buy before their loan approval ran out.
"Our peak months were April and May," says Ross, "and we were busy until July, when things started to quieten down as the Central Bank rules took effect and the leniency that existed in terms of the deposit and salary multiple at the beginning of the year ran out. By August the rules were being applied very strictly."
Another effect of the Central Bank rules is that houses in good condition are "flying", according to Ross, while those that are dated or need work are "struggling".
"With a house in great condition we can have up to four people bidding," she explains, "because the 20pc deposit requirement sucks up all the purchasers' cash and they have no money left to do work on a property that might need a new kitchen or bathrooms."
According to Ross, all of Dublin 16 is a hotspot for younger families, and one of the big draws is St Colmcille's school, which has recently been renovated and is a "fantastic school, very high-tech, that exerts a huge pull in the Knocklyon/Rathfarnham area".
Woodstown is an exceptionally popular estate, says Ross, with Beverly, Idrone, Templeroan and Ashton all sought-after as well.
"There is good demand for houses with space to the side, that give the potential for families to extend and grow into the house," she notes, citing a recent example of a house in Idrone with 10ft of space to one side that was the subject of an intense bidding war. A similar house in better condition but with no room to the side sold for less.
For the year ahead, Ross is predicting modest growth of 3pc. "Because of the bank rules, borrowing power is less than it was. That will keep things fairly steady in 2016."