Property prices pick up again, but not in Dublin
House prices picked up again last month, bucking a recent trend of price falls.
Prices across the country were up 6.6pc in the year to December.
Although the rise in the month was a modest 0.5pc, it reversed the falls in November.
But prices fell in Dublin in December, according to the Central Statistics Office.
Dublin residential property prices fell by 0.5pc in the month, but were 2.6pc higher than a year ago.
Apartment prices in Dublin were 7.8pc higher when compared with the same month of 2014, the CSO said.
The 6.5pc rise nationwide in prices is much slower than the 16pc rise in the year to December 2014.
An average property is selling for €221,400 now, according to calculations based on the CSO figures by economist Julie Tennent of Goodbody Stockbrokers.
This is €111,600 less than at the peak of the market in 2007.
In Dublin, the average price is now around €189,00, a fall of €160,000 since the top of the market.
Outside Dublin, properties are selling for €183,500 on average. This is a fall of €100,000 in the last eight years.
Experts said Central Bank lending limits, known as macro-prudential rules, were stopping price rises in the capital, and shifting buying activity to other areas.
Ms Tennent said: "The rate of increase in Irish house prices in 2015 was curtailed by the introduction of the macro-prudential rules at the start of the year."
She said the impact has been more pronounced in Dublin where property values are higher. But she warned that comparing prices now with those of a year ago is distorted by a surge of buying at the end of 2014, prompted by advance notice of the new lending limits coming in and the ending of property tax reliefs for investors.