Landlord exodus helps cool house price rises but price of three-bed semi in Dublin heading for €500,000

An upsurge of private landlords selling their properties nationally has increased supply levels and tempered price rises in some areas, the Q2 REA Average House Price Index has learned

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Up to 30% of houses for sale in some areas of Dublin are now due to landlords selling their additional properties, with knock-on effects for the rental market, the survey found. 

Actual selling prices in Dublin postcode districts have risen by 2.5% in the past three months, to an average of €493,333 – but the annual rate of increase has dropped two percentage points to 8% on the previous survey. 

However, in North County Dublin areas such as Swords, Skerries and Balbriggan, prices have risen by treble that amount to 22% annually, as Dubliners seek a more affordable home within the county. 

The REA Average House Price Survey concentrates on the actual sale price of Ireland’s typical stock home, the three-bed semi, giving an accurate picture of the second-hand property market in towns and cities countrywide. 

The price of a three-bedroomed semi-detached house across the country rose by 2.9% over the past three months to €286,611 – representing an annual increase of 13%. 

58% of all purchasers in the past quarter were first-time buyers, according to REA, a figure which rose to 78% in Dublin as people with mortgage approval scramble to get on the housing ladder. 

“At around the €410,000 mark, second hand homes are coming to the market in greater numbers in areas like Lucan and Bray in Co Wicklow,” said REA spokesperson Barry McDonald. 

“This is taking the urgency out of the market in these locations, as buyers feel that they have some options. However, this easing is only being seen in areas where there are new homes. 

“Elsewhere supply remains a major issue. Interest rate rises and inflation fears are giving buyers some pause for thought but neither of these issues can temper the pent-up demand of mortgage approved buyers. 

“However, the biggest factor on the market in the last quarter is the increasing proportion of sales from private landlords, and the effects that it is having on the market.” 

One Dublin agent warned of the knock-on effect on the country’s workforce of the shrinking rental market as 30% of his vendors are now private landlords selling up. 

“The biggest issue at the moment is the sheer numbers of people seeking accommodation, combined with private investors leaving the market,” said Anthony McGee, REA McGee Tallaght. 

“We are finding that landlords feel that the market has peaked, and taxation and legislation are influencing their decisions to sell. 

“As a result, we have people leaving the country because they cannot find accommodation when their landlord decides to sell, and this will affect the available workforce in the long-term.” 

In North County Dublin, prices have risen by 6% to €412,000 in the last quarter as buyers complete for more affordable properties in areas such as Balbriggan, Swords and Skerries. 

This is an increase of 22% in the past year, which is treble the capital’s average, with 83% of sales in the area to first time buyers – the highest urban figures reported in the country.  

The highest segment increase in Q2 was in cities outside the capital, which saw a 3.3% rise to an average selling price of €298,750. 

Commuter counties saw prices increase by 2.3% – a jump of €6,833 to €311,833. 

In the rest of the country, where prices rose 3.2% to €202,897, the survey found that one in every three buyers were from outside the county, with 50% first-time purchasers, as new working conditions enable a rethink on home bases. 

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