House prices rise in Dublin on back of family demand
HOUSE prices went up in Dublin last year, driven by demand for family homes, but declined in the rest of the country.
A shortage of three and four-bed residential properties in the capital sent prices rising by up to 2.7pc.
But prices fell everywhere else. The country is now made up of a series of "micro markets" for housing, according to a body that represents surveyors, estate agents and auctioneers.
Second-hand three beds in Dublin rose by 2.7pc in 2012, the Society of Chartered Surveyors found.
This compared with a fall of 12.6pc for the same semi-detached houses in 2011.
Four beds went up in price by 1.1pc, compared with a fall of almost 14pc the year before.
Roland O'Connell of the society said prices in the capital had now stabilised and risen modestly. A lack of supply of family type homes was sending prices up.
He said we were no longer dealing with a property crisis, but the legacy of that crisis.
"How we deal with the legacy issues under our control will have a major bearing on the future of the property market in this country. ''
Mr O'Connell said: "2012 was very much a year of transition with increasing levels of both commercial and residential transactional and rental activity being experienced by a growing number of agents in different sectors."
The rises in Dublin, contrasted with falls in other parts, means there will be no single moment when the market hits the floor and recovery begins.
"Rather, different types of property in different regions will experience variations in peak-to-trough prices and will recover at different times," Mr O'Connell said.
Demand in urban areas is coming from renters who want to buy a family home.
The outlook for this year was uncertain because of the introduction of the property tax in the summer, the surveyors society pointed out.
The survey also picked up a rise nationally in rents of 1.3pc, with Dublin rents rising by 3pc.
"Family homes are in demand for rental, tenancies are typically lasting longer and a new trend whereby people are renting out their home and renting another property, either a larger home or closer to workplaces, is emerging," Mr O'Connell added.
Farmers are also benefiting from strong demand for agricultural land.
The average price per acre was €9,768 last year. This was up slightly from the previous year.