Ask the experts: What impact (if any) do you think the effects of the last Budget's Help-to-Buy scheme combined with the Central Bank's end-of-year tweaks to its lending regime will have on the market?
The desired effect will be met, which is an increase in house-building, particularly in the sub-€350,000 bracket. In the short term, while new schemes are planned, there will be an increased demand effect, as more people will be in a position to raise mortgage finance and indeed bring their buying plans forward.
Michael Grehan s the managing director of the Sherry FitzGerald estate agency group, which has a 66-branch-strong network including franchises. He has more than 27 years' experience in the sector.
The prices for new-build starter homes will increase. The changes will also increase supply of new housing, as developers will be more confident that they will have willing and able buyers for their units at that higher price. However, in the short to medium term, the supply side of the curve will not be adjusted quickly enough to meet current demand.
Marian McQuillan is the CEO of Quillsen, formerly Gunne Estate Agents, and was formerly a director of Purcell McQuillan Tax Partners.
It is likely that a combination of relaxed lending and the introduction of a first-time buyers' grant will increase demand for starter homes and speed up the rate of price recovery for entry- level houses. The effect of both is likely to be inflationary, but the Central Bank's controls on lending in terms of loan-to-income multiplier will still continue to somewhat control house prices. The easing of mortgage restrictions will free up rental accommodation, as many tenants will now qualify for mortgages, and it will also allow a cohort of buyers to purchase homes close to Dublin. The first-time buyers' grant will also give confidence to builders to construct more entry-level prices, which will be welcome.
Keith Lowe is CEO of Douglas Newman Good, which has 75 offices throughout the country. He has 32 years' experience in the sector, having joined the firm in 1984.
New houses are too expensive and I can't see massive sales at the prices being quoted. So the help-to-buy scheme will assist in some areas but not, though, outside the city of Dublin. The CBI change in the macro- prudential rules will help and are an improvement, but the CBI still has its foot well and truly on the brake pedal of the property market with the 3.5 loan-to-income threshold.
Pat Davitt is the CEO of the Institute of Professional Auctioneers and Valuers (IPAV). Pat has more than 34 years' experience in the sector, spending much of it running a family-based auctioneering firm in Mullingar.