Houses for sale up as a result of Covid shock?

Purely anecdotal but I’m seen laods of housing coming on the market for sale in Cork city last few weeks.

There was pent up demand to sell from March to June during Covid, but still, this seems more than usual.

Are sellers panicking that they may have missed the top of the market? And trying to sell before prices fall visibily on the registers?

Daft saying 7% drop in Cork prices so far but that’s a lagging indicator

In the same way that there was a pent up demand from buyers during the lockdown period, properties were delayed from going on the market as it was quite pointless trying to sell a house during the height of lockdown unless you very urgently needed to sell. Now that nationwide movement restrictions have been lifted it’s natural that there would be an above-average number of homes going on the market to compensate for months of no activity. Not to say that people aren’t happy to cash in at current prices, or might be expecting a drop in future.

There’s certainly been an uptick in the number of properties available in Dublin. Walking around SCD it looks like there is a huge increase but the MyHome figures have only gone up about 10%. If you look at the Dublin price changes on MyHome almost 100% are price drops but the median selling price is still 395k and it’s been between 395 and 400k for over a year. PPR prices have been falling very slowly since January but the median is still 40k below asking. I guess the price drops might start to take an effect soon - the covid situation has had it’s biggest impact on small business owners - it will be very difficult for them to get mortgages but most of them already have one. Workers on minimum wage were never going to buy houses anyway. So the main house buying cohort - young professionals is probably unaffected.

The key will be supply. There is no longer a need to rent in the city (the desire might still be there for young single people), AirBnb is no longer the saviour of the ‘accidental’ landlord (AKA greedy people who wanted to hold on to both their houses when they upsized). Student rentals, already dented by co-living slums, are not going to be a thing this year. There should be enough demand to absorb this released rental supply but often people buy because they are going to start a family - if you can work from home do you really need to buy in Dublin? You don’t need a creche on the way to work - you can use one close at hand in the town/village that you live in. You’re not on the school treadmill, there are great local schools in towns round Dublin. If I was making these choices now and the difference was between a 600k house in Dublin and 300k in a country town I know what I’d be doing.


After the fiasco of Charlie McCreevy’s decentralisation, one of the most brazen political strokes in Irish history, the pandemic might bring us a new form of WFH decentralisation.

Lots of young public servants would jump at the chance to move out of Dublin and buy a house for a fraction of the cost. It would make perfect sense provided you didn’t have to turn up in the office more than once a week and, ideally, you could pick your own times, Of course, your spouse/partner would have to be in the same boat.

But there’s a catch. Where will the kids go to school/college? Cork and Galway have almost caught up with Dublin prices (one-size fits all for the Central Bank). Do you want them growing up in Limerick or Waterford?

Still, lots will make the leap in the coming years, easing the pressure in the capital.

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