In August, the rate of increase in residential property prices across the country continued to decelerate. Nationally, prices rose by 0.9% compared to the same month in 2022, a significant drop from the 1.6% increase in the year up to July. This 0.9% growth rate is also the lowest recorded since November 2020. Additionally, month-on-month price inflation weakened, rising by 0.3% in August, compared to 0.4% in July, as per the latest data from the Central Statistics Office.
However, while there is an overall upward trend across the country, the fall in home prices in Dublin accelerated. Prices in the capital fell by 1.9% in the 12 months leading up to August, compared to a 1.4% decrease in the year to July. This represents the sharpest annual rate of decline in residential property prices in Dublin since October 2012.
Niall Corkery, Statistician in the Prices Division of the Central Statistics Office, noted, “In the 12 months to August 2023, house prices in Dublin fell by 2.3%, while apartment prices were down by 0.2%. The highest house price growth in Dublin was in Fingal at 0.2%, while Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown saw a decline of 3.9%.”
Outside of the capital, property prices increased by 3.1%, with apartments rising by 1.8% and houses by 3.1% compared to the same month a year ago. Mr. Corkery added, “The region outside of Dublin that saw the largest rise in house prices was the South-West (Cork, Kerry) at 4.4%, while at the other end of the scale, the Midlands region (Laois, Longford, Offaly, Westmeath) and the West region (Galway, Mayo, Roscommon) both saw a 2.1% rise.”
The Central Statistics Office found that the median price of a home in the year up to August was €320,000. The lowest median price for a house was €159,750 in Longford, while the highest median price was recorded in Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown at €634,919. The least expensive Eircode area over the year to August was F45 “Castlerea,” with a median price of €135,000, while A94 “Blackrock” was the most expensive with a median price of €735,000.
Overall, 4,640 sales were recorded in the month, marking an 8% increase compared to the same month last year. Nationally, residential property prices are now 2.8% higher than their highest level during the peak of the property boom in April 2007 and have increased by 129.2% from the post-crash trough in early 2013.
The CSO data also shows that between April and June, prices of new dwellings were 11% higher than in the same three months of 2022, compared to an 11% increase in the first quarter. Prices of existing homes in the second quarter were 0.6% higher than in the same period last year.
Goodbody’s Chief Economist, Dermot O’Leary, commented on the CSO figures, stating that over the past 12 months, the higher-priced areas in the capital have been the weakest, likely due to the impact of higher interest rates. He also noted that the Central Bank’s figures show the first decline in loan demand for mortgages since the first quarter of 2022, with interest rates being attributed as a contributing factor for the first time since the question was asked in the first quarter of 2015. Additionally, O’Leary highlighted that residential transactions have remained flat in the year to date, with new home transactions up 2% year-on-year and existing home transactions down by 1%. However, he observed differing trends over the summer months, with new home transactions down 10% year-on-year in the three months leading up to August, relative to a 2% year-on-year growth in second-hand transactions, particularly in Dublin.