Belfast Telegraph

House price growth nears 20% in parts of south and west

Property prices continued to surge in some parts of the south and west at close to 20% over the last year, official figures have revealed.

In the year to the end of May, the Central Statistics Office (CSO) said, there was a huge recovery in pockets of the market in Carlow, Kilkenny, Waterford and Wexford, where sale prices grew by 18.6%.

There were also some massive improvements in Galway, Roscommon and Mayo, with values up by 18.2%.

In Dublin property prices were up just over 11%.

The CSO said the average price paid for a property in May was 251,305 euro.

Over the last 12 months, 37,599 houses and apartments were sold with 9,665 secured by first-time buyers to live in, another 19,447 by people who had previously bought a property, and 8,487 by people who were not planning to live in them.

The continued rate of growth will raise concerns over sustainability and questions over regulation of lending and the effectiveness of the Government's first-time buyers help-to-buy scheme which allows for a rebate of up to 20,000 euro.

The Institute of Professional Auctioneers & Valuers (Ipav) said nine out of 10 properties bought and sold in May were second hand homes.

Chief executive Pat Davitt said policies were needed to deal with "the absolutely chronic issue of the lack of supply".

Ipav also said the CSO numbers were based on sales of just 3,067 in May.

Dr John McCartney, director of research at estate agency Savills, said house price growth in Dublin was down to easing of lending rules in the Central Bank along with the help-to-buy initiative.

"Allowing for time lags in the data, we are only now beginning to see the true effect of these policy changes in the figures," he said.

Savills forecasts that prices will grow across all regions by between 8% and 12% this year.

The lowest rate of growth was in Fingal, north Dublin, where prices rose 6.8% in the year to May.

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