Thursday 16 August 2018

Families forced out of the capital find commuter-belt prices rising sharply

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Stock picture

Ian Begley

The lack of affordable houses in Dublin is "pushing" families out of the capital, while substantially increasing their daily commute, according to a new study.

Based on an analysis of the Property Price Register, it shows the number of sales nationally has increased by 8.4pc in the first half of 2017, compared to the same period last year.

However, the rise in sales and values in the commuter belt is the standout feature.

The number of sales in Meath is up 43pc and the value of transactions is up 47pc in the county. In Wicklow, sales are up 21pc while values are up 25pc.

According to Angela Keegan, managing director of MyHome.ie, the website that carried out the study, this indicates the lack of supply of affordable houses is "pushing buyers out of Dublin".

"The downside of this trend, and something which has been highlighted in recent reports, is the increase in commuting times for people working in Dublin," she said.

Ms Keegan added that speculation around the future of the help-to-buy scheme had caused unnecessary uncertainty in the property market.

"Help-to-buy, on its own, won't solve the crisis - we need a co-ordinated package of measures for that, but abolishing it would be a retrograde step," she said.

The effect of rising prices is also evident in counties that recorded small increases - or drops - in the number of sales.

For example, the number of sales fell in Galway by 1.4pc but the value of those transactions was up 9pc. Similarly, in Limerick the number of sales was down marginally - 0.1pc - but the value was up 16.7pc.

The study shows there were 23,148 sales nationally in the first half of the year. The value of those transactions increased significantly, rising from €5.1bn to €5.8bn, an increase of 15pc.

Dublin led the way in the first six months of the year with 7,455 sales - an increase of 11pc.

The amount of money spent in the capital also grew by 13.2pc, from €2.7bn to more than €3bn. The capital was followed by Cork (2,532), Kildare (1,212) and Galway (1,138), with Meath (970) and Limerick (834) making up the top six. The most money was spent in Dublin, more than €3bn, with the least being spent in Longford, €16m.

While sales figures rose in 20 counties and fell in six, the amount of money spent on property in each county was up in all with the exception of Clare and Donegal, where the amount spent fell back by 19pc and 7pc respectively.

While the falls in the number of sales in Galway, Limerick and Waterford were low or even marginal, there were sizable falls in Longford (19pc), Sligo (17.2pc) and Donegal (14.5pc).

Irish Independent

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