Monday 25 January 2016

REA Predictions for 2016

The effects of the Central Bank’s restrictions of mortgage deposit lending has caused some estate agents in Dublin to predict another year of price falls in 2016.

A survey carried out for the Irish Independent by the Real Estate Alliance Group has found that agents in Dublin expect prices to rise by just 0.3% on average in 2016.

However, some agents in South County Dublin are predicting that prices will fall a further -3.5% next year, after a 12 month period which saw -9.3% wiped off the value of the average house in the area.

In the Dublin city area, some agents remain just as sceptical of the coming year as they feel that without Government intervention rising rents, a lack of suitable supply and the punitive mortgage deposit rules for second time buyers will combine to see prices drop by -5% in areas such as Tallaght and Rathfarnham.

Overall, agents in the Dublin city area are predicting rises of just 1.5% over the next 12 months.

This is in comparison to the nationwide average expectation of a 5.6 per cent rise in property prices next year.

While many Dublin agents reported zero growth in the fourth quarter of 2015, Rathcoole (-3.33%), Lucan (-1.82%) and Tallaght (-2.5%) suffered drops.

The Central Bank rules remain the key driver for growth or stagnation, especially in the Dublin area, with one agent predicting a rise of 3% if the rules are amended and a challenging market if they are not.

 And as investors continue to exit the rental market, agents have predicted that rents will rise by 7-10% in 2016, further excluding people from saving deposits to get on the housing ladder.

Agents in the three main cities outside Dublin are more optimistic, with rises of 10% predicted in Limerick, 7% in Cork city and 3% in Galway.

The outlook for the commuter belt is ruled completely by the anticipation of new housing coming on stream in 2016.

Where this is the case, agents are optimistic. Where there is nothing in the pipeline, many feel that growth will be close to zero due to the lack of supply of suitable housing.

Agents in Meath have predicted just a 1.5% rise on average, after 3.72% average increases in 2015, with Navan and Ashbourne both expected to experience zero growth in the coming year.

“Our agents in Meath are predicting that unless there are government changes there will be no improvements next year,” said REA Chairman Michael O’Connor.

“They are seeing at first hand how difficult it is for developers to access finance and also build at a profit.

“If this is not addressed through a combination of measures, then we will see a situation where we will be left with little or no supply in crucial areas.”

Agents in Kildare endured price falls in Q4, mainly driven by supply issues, and after a year that finished flat on 2014, are predicting a maximum of 3.5% growth in 2016.

“We are seeing predicted stagnation in towns like Newbridge, which are still affordable commuter areas with average prices at €195,000, due to the fact that there are no new estates coming on stream,” said Michael O’Connor.

“Where there is any new building taking place, there are suitable properties to purchase or there is value for the first-time buyer, then agents’ expectations are higher.

“Around the country, we are seeing property markets in many areas making their first steps to recovery, albeit from a low base.

“And this recent growth is reflected in the confidence of their local agents with double digit rises predicted in Leitrim (11%), Monaghan (10%), Roscommon (10%) and Donegal (10%).”


Tuesday 19 January 2016

Real Estate Alliance Property Show – New York 3rd of MARCH 2016

Almost one in six overseas enquiries about Irish property are now coming from the United States, a national estate agents survey has found.

US property buyers are flocking to secure homes and investment properties in Ireland, buoyed by a strong dollar and the lure of a resurgent economy for emigrants, the Real Estate Alliance nationwide survey has found.

A survey of REA members shows that enquiries from the US increased from almost zero to 16% in 2015.

And this could signal the first major return of emigrants who feel that the time is right to move back to Ireland.

“While there has always been interest from the US market, this has increased markedly in a year that saw a 22% increase in overseas enquiries about Irish property,” said REA Chairman Michael O’Connor.

“Overall, calls from overseas buyers represented 19% of all enquiries received by REA agents in 2015 and 16% of total sales.

“49% of our enquiries came from the UK, 8% from continental Europe, 10% from Australia, but the real surge in new interest came from the US.

“The average house price in the US in November 2015 was $374,900 (€341,656), compared to our Average House Price survey national value of €188,370, so there is obvious value for American buyers in Ireland.”

And Real Estate Alliance are offering Irish property vendors the chance to cash in on this mini-boom by registering for the Alliance’s upcoming New York Property Exhibition – the first of its kind to be held in the US.

REA are bringing thousands of properties to New York, giving a host of US buyers the chance to browse in comfort and talk to the experts on the ground.

The exhibition takes place in the Fitzpatrick Hotel at Grand Central, Manhattan from 5-7pm on March 3.

According to REA agents, 31% of overseas buyers are moving to Ireland to live and work, while 29% are purchasing a home for their retirement and 20% are purchasing as an investment.

32% of all overseas purchases in 2015 were completed for less than €100,000 and a further 20% of sales fell in the €100,000-€150,000 bracket, while 31% were properties sold for over €200,000.

The majority of buyers (41%) are aged between 40-50 and 28% are aged 30-40.

“US buyer interest is particularly strong in many undervalued rural counties and scenic locations and for the first time in the bigger cities, mostly from emigrants who feel that the time is right to return,” said REA’s Michael O’Connor.

“This presents many vendors with the opportunity of achieving better prices due to interest outside of the normal marketplace.”

Real Estate Alliance (REA) is Ireland’s leading property group of Chartered Surveyors with over 55 branches nationwide, comprising many of the country’s longest-established auctioneers and estate agents.

Further details on the REA New York Property Exhibition, and a list of local agents, can be found on or send an email to register for the event at

Available for interview:
Michael O’Connor, REA chairman and auctioneer 087 259 7034

Eamonn Spratt, REA vice-chairman 086 2531277

Media enquiries:
Darren Hughes, MediaConsult,, 086 293 7037