Friday 22 September 2017

Stock: Official stats overestimate the rate of construction

The drop off in the number of homes available is due to the marked slowdown in new house completions. Stock Image: PA
The drop off in the number of homes available is due to the marked slowdown in new house completions. Stock Image: PA
Paul Melia

Paul Melia

There are 2,003,645 houses and apartments across the State, an increase of just 8,800, or 0.4pc, since 2011.

The Central Statistics Office (CSO) says there are currently 421 dwellings for every 1,000 people in the State, a fall from 435 just five years ago.

It says that while most homes are single-dwelling units, some 95 buildings have 100 units or more. The most populated building in the State has 372 dwellings, and is home to 882 people.

The drop off in the number of homes available is due to the marked slowdown in new house completions.

Just 2pc of all homes in the State were built in the last five years.

"Just 33,436 householders indicated their dwelling was built between 2011 and 2016, an average of just 6,687 per year," the CSO said. "In contrast, 431,763 households stated that their dwelling was built between 2001 and 2010, an average of 43,176 per year.

"Almost half of new homes were built in rural areas. In Dublin City and suburbs, from a total of 422,182, only 6,598 (1.6pc) indicated their house or apartment was constructed from 2011 onwards."

The figures are in marked contrast to official completion figures from the Department of Housing, which showed that between January 2011 and April 2016, the number built was 55,240. The CSO figures are based on census form returns and not all households indicated when their home was constructed.

The department's figures are based on units connected to the electricity network by the ESB. However, this includes homes vacant for two years or more and units requiring a new connection.

The department said it was in contact with the ESB to see if only connections from new-builds could be captured.

It was also exploring using alternative databases such as the Building Control Management System, which records when work begins on new homes.

Irish Independent

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