Uncertainty caused by Covid-19 means those who were about to buy a home will be wondering whether that's a bad idea right now. If property prices fall, then negative equity beckons. Wouldn't waiting it out be a better idea? If you're thinking of selling, then you're wondering whether you should cash out fast.
So what will happen to property prices in the months ahead? That's the big question.
First off, note that asking prices haven't fallen at all thus far. There is no evidence of price cuts in transactions recently completed.
The first reaction of vendors in a crisis is to sit on their hands, not to lower prices.
In the big crash, it took six months before the first vendors cut their asking prices in response to prevailing conditions and no sales.
Right now, the industry is almost shut down. The pause button has been pressed.
Where property prices go after 'restart' is dependent entirely on the virus. If its effects dissipate before the summer ends, as hoped, and most people go back to work; then prices may blip for a few months (some agents suggest 5pc to 8pc down) before resuming the course they were on before Covid hit - a slight upturn.
Or they might even go up. Because others believe the shortage of new homes resulting from months-long site lockdowns will offset such 'Covid slippage', and we might see a lift as pent-up demand is released.
As with the global financial crash, the economic impact needs to be deep and lasting to push prices downwards in the long run.
Jobs are key. If they are lost permanently in numbers, then prices will fall for longer and by more. But the Dot-com Bomb and the Currency Crisis also showed that even a hard economic wallop, if short-lived, will affect prices only temporarily.
If Covid comes back in a second wave lasting into next year, or if its impact is more drastic in the long run on businesses - enough to cause sustained job losses - then house prices are likely to fall more substantially in the long term. Again, jobs and employment are key.
Even if that happens, it is unlikely prices will fall to the extent they did during the crash, nor stay down as long. The crash was a perfect storm of factors that had been building for years. There is still a shortage of homes in Ireland and Covid is alone as an impact.
In our poor-case scenario, much will depend on how the banks react. Hong Kong property was hardly affected by the short-lived Sars outbreak, but Covid has knocked prices down by more than 5pc.
Wall Street banks are now split on what will happen next. Some predict a fast rebound, while others cite employment impact and predict a 20pc slide. So, in a poor-case scenario, perhaps that's the sort of price damage we might expect here in Ireland.
If you're planning to sell, then the value of the home you buy next will rise or fall in tandem. If you plan to buy, ask yourself whether your job is safe and if you'll still get a loan. But if it's a home you'll be living in for years to come, the alternative is still renting. In Ireland, that's also a poor-case scenario.