And lo, the soft landing came to pass? Or will it...

Figures indicate Dublin housing market cooling

By Aoife Carr Last updated: 02-10-06, 12:01

Figures released by estate agents Sherry Fitzgerald this morning suggest a cooling off in the second-hand housing market in the three months between July and September.

The average price of a second-hand property in Ireland rose by just 2.6 per cent during this period bringing growth in the nine-month period to the end of September to 17.9 per cent.

This moderation in the pace of price growth was even more evident in the Dublin second-hand market, in which the average price rose by 1.5 per cent during the third quarter.

The pace of growth in Cork was more in line with the national average, coming in at 3.1 per cent for the quarter and 14.5 per cent in the first nine months; the other regional centres of Galway and Limerick also witnessed similar levels of price growth.

Marian Finnegan, chief economist with Sherry Fitzgerald, said a combination of rising interest rates and an increase in the amount of second-hand homes on the market were the main factors in the slowing down of price rises.

“After a phenomenal first six months in which average house prices rose spectacularly we are now witnessing some moderation in the pace of capital appreciation. A soft landing like this in the context of a very vibrant economy is the best result for all participants in the market,” she said.

Ms Finnegan remained positive about the future of the Irish property market.

"The short term deceleration in the pace of house price inflation is a result of a number of unique market conditions, most especially the current interest rate environment. It is a temporary phenomenon.

“With interest rate increases likely to level out in the New Year we remain confident that the combination of continued employment growth, record breaking migration levels and very buoyant rates of economic expansion will facilitate a return to a more vibrant rate of market activity in 2007,” Ms Finnegan added.

© 2006 ireland.com

Most of you have probably seen this on HPC, but I’ll stick it in here too (courtesy of post by Green Bear at HPC - not sure if s/he posts here).

It’s from the Daft messageboard and I presume it’s genuine.

daft.ie/buying_or_selling/index.php?dcn[discussion_id]=86512&dcn[forum_id]=4

14/9/2006

I used to be an estate agent.
Have 6 friends who still are.
They are superb agents, second to none.
About 3 weeks ago the market popped !
Buckets on for sale, more than ever before … and NOBODY interested in even viewing.

One mate of mine works in a well-known agency.
They have 75 properties on the books … and only 5 bids. And even they are shaky. only 1 bidder, no counter bidders.

Everyone in the office is twiddling their thumbs as the phones are not ringing.
Im not talking about no bids, Im talking about no one even ringing.
They are cancelling viewings laft, right and centre as not even 1 person is looking.

This is in the centre of Dublin, encompassing 1st time buyer market and some 2nd time buyer €700k+ properties.

Party’s over folks !

2/10/06

SINCE ive written this the markets gotten worse.
When you read about new launches being ‘sold out’ … try calling a week or two later and you will see whats still on offer i.e. LOADS !

Auction rooms are dead.
One estate agent in dublin had 7 auctions last thursday and no one even turned up - let alone bid !
Swathes of 2nd hand properties not selling.

The only property thats selling are the ones where the owners are cutting prices. Prices have definately come DOWN.

All this evidence doesnt point to the bubble popping … its pointing to the bubble having already popped. Past tense !

Always remember, unlike stock prices, property prices are sticky.
If someone has a house for sale at 700k and the market is only willing to pay 650k then the house just sits there. Official statistics dont record a decline, even if the market drops to 600k.

The knifes just gone in … theres going to be a bloodbath !

Well, it’s hard to know if that’s genuine Chomp but thanks for the info, could just be somebody’s fantasy tho!

There was a scare piece on RTE news last night which as much amounted to a diluted version of what we’ve been saying all along tho’, so who knows!

Yeah, I wondered about it’s authenticity too…but there are a few phrases in there that have a ring of truth about them.

For example, this sentence: “They have 75 properties on the books … and only 5 bids. And even they are shaky. only 1 bidder, no counter bidders.”

That sounds more like EA-speak rather than some random bullshitter-speak, but I suppose a pinch of salt is a good idea.

Anyway, for sure we have that Times report from last week that said 75% of properties going to auction failed to sell either at the auction itself or afterwards, so I do think something’s afoot.