Dublin 16: Garages and gardens great for 'future-proofing'
Stock is down in Dublin 16 on a year ago but, despite this, lending restrictions played a big role in keeping price increases well below the norm at just 1pc. This is middle-ground, middle-class territory and it contains the sort of homes which are impacted most by the Central Bank's lending regime.
Even so, Carole Ross of Sherry FitzGerald had a busy year. "We did not have as much stock as usual, and you would have thought that there would have been dramatic price rises as a result. But prices at the end of the year were not substantially up on what they were at the beginning of the year."
Ross reports that properties in the €350-500k bracket were "flying, while anything over €600k wasn't flying, unless it was super special". For buyers in Dublin 16, the features that made a house "super special" in 2016 included being at the end of a cul-de-sac, having a big garden or a new extension and being in top condition.
Cremorne was one area that performed particularly well, and Ross says that the McInerney-style houses in Knocklyon Avenue and Woods, and in Idrone, were in demand. These are 1970s houses with wider gardens than those houses situated in more recent developments. They make €450k regardless of condition.
People want to future-proof, so they'll pay a premium for a house with a garage that they can turn into a playroom at a later date, regardless of condition, so they can grow into the house. Any house on its own land sold really well in 2016. Brockagh House, a five-bed detached house on half an acre quoted €1.3m but ended up making €1.4m.
People who've done well want the big house with the big garden but don't want to leave the area as they want to stay close to the schools, sports, bus routes and M50. D16 has everything - bar the Luas!" Ross is optimistic for 2017, predicting the return of first-time buyers to the market, encouraged by amendments to the Central Bank lending rules, will lead to growth of around 4pc. over the year.