Wednesday 19 December 2018

Now it's seen as cheaper to buy than rent everywhere

Bank of Ireland economist Dr Loretta O’Sullivan
Bank of Ireland economist Dr Loretta O’Sullivan
Donal O'Donovan

Donal O'Donovan

Most people now think buying a home is cheaper than renting, not only in Dublin but across the country, according to research from Bank of Ireland.

A survey this month for the bank's Economic Pulse - research that tracks sentiment - found that 70pc of those who responded think it is cheaper to purchase a property in their area than it is to rent.

That was up from 60pc who thought buying was cheaper than renting at the start of 2016.

Bank of Ireland chief economist Dr Loretta O'Sullivan said house prices are still around 20pc off their previous peak, whereas rents are now well above theirs.

Most households also expect rents and house prices to rise in the year ahead.

The data backs up recent research from KBC Bank, which showed a huge cohort of would-be buyers are locked in the private rented sector because of the high threshold needed for mortgage approval and the lack of housing supply for first-time buyers.

However, only half of those surveyed by Bank of Ireland think now is a good time to buy.

Two-thirds think it is a good time to sell.

The share of respondents expecting house prices to increase over the coming year was up in all regions, with the exception of Dublin - though it is already more than four-in-five people in the capital.

The wider BoI Economic Pulse dipped this month as business confidence eased. Consumer confidence was little changed, though there are signs household spending is becoming looser.

Almost one-in-three families is planning on spending a large sum of money on home improvements in the next 12 months, while increasing numbers of people expect to change cars this year - often to a second-hand UK import. Some 37pc said they thought it was a good time to make a major purchase such as furniture.

Irish Independent

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