Signs the real estate market has peaked as prices slowly rise

House price inflation has cooled as the cost of living crisis appears to be dampening demand, raising hopes the market has peaked.

rice rose by double-digit percentages in April, but the rate of increase was at its lowest level in nearly two years.

The Indo Daily: Have we peaked in property prices? Is it the right time to buy?

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New figures from the Central Statistics Office (CSO) show prices rose 14.2% in the 12 months to April.

That compares with a 15.1% increase on the year to March.

However, the monthly increase in April was 0.1pc, indicating that the growth rate is slowing.

This is the first time in nearly two years that house price inflation has slowed.

The April figures suggest prices may have peaked, said KBC Bank economist Austin Hughes.

He added that the slowdown in the rate of increase reflects the fact that they have grown so much that affordability is now a key issue.

The real estate market was experiencing greater uncertainty related to the economic impact of the war in Ukraine, the rising cost of living, rising interest rates and weaker economic growth.

Mr Hughes said demand could be ‘normalized’ after the Covid-surge buy-in which was prompted by a space race and higher economies.

Housing supply is expected to improve for the rest of the year and beyond, he added.

The news comes after President Michael D Higgins called the state’s housing policy a “disaster.”

“It’s not a crisis anymore – it’s a disaster,” he said, adding that the “basic needs” of “food, shelter and education” had to be met.

The insufficient number of homes being built means prices are high, experts said.

Mr Higgins voiced his criticism at the opening of a residential facility for young adults coming out of homelessness in Kildare.

According to the CSO, residential property prices in Dublin have seen an annual increase of 11.5%.

Property prices outside Dublin were 16.4% higher than a year earlier.

The region outside the capital that saw the biggest increase in property prices was the border, at 22.1%, while at the other end of the scale, property prices in the Midwest rose 11.7%. In the south-east, prices rose by 21.1 pc over the year.

The median, or median, price of a house bought in Ireland in the year to April was €286,000.

The Dublin region had the highest median price, at €410,000.

Within the Dublin area itself, Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown had the highest median price, at €605,000, while South Dublin had the lowest price, at €375,000.

The highest median prices outside Dublin were in Wicklow (€395,000) and Kildare (€345,000), while the lowest median price was €137,000 in Longford.

The national index is now only 2.1% lower than its highest level in 2007.

The number of houses and apartments purchased by cuckoo funds and state-subsidized housing bodies rose to 11,701 last year, the CSO said, referring to tax returns.

This represents approximately 20% of the 58,152 properties purchased in 2021.

Penny D. Jackson