House completions growing but still well below demand
House completions grew by a quarter in the three months to 30 September, according to BER Housebuilding Tracker from Goodbody.
House completions are now expected to reach 18,000 units this year, however this is still half of the estimated annual demand.
According to Dermot O’Leary, chief economist with Goodbody, this represents a strong, but slowing expansion in completions.
In the nine months to 30 September, 12,617 new dwellings were completed, a 28pc increase year-on-year.
"While we believe new supply will continue to grow strongly in the coming years, a significant supply deficit will remain throughout our forecast horizon to 2020," Mr O’Leary said.
Most of the new housing activity continues to take place in Dublin and surrounding counties, the report finds.
In the past twelve months, an estimated 6,566 units were completed in Dublin, up 33pc year-on-year.
A further 3,631 units - representing a 41pc increase year-on-year - were completed in the surrounding counties.
The Greater Dublin Area now accounts for 59pc of new housing supply.
The South-West region also saw significant growth, up 29pc year-on-year in the third quarter to 559 completions.
In the first three quarters of 2018, apartments accounted for only 13pc of the new output.
"Given Ireland has the lowest share of apartments in its housing stock out of any country in the European Union, Q3 projections are disappointing in this area of housing," Mr O'Leary said.
Ongoing uncertainty about building standards have played a role in this trend, the report found, but viability is also the primary constraint in many parts of the country.