THERE WAS A 1.1 per cent decrease in property prices across the country in the 12 months up to the end of May this year, according to the latest stats from the CSO. That compares with a decline of 15.3 per cent in the previous year.
However, there was a slight increase in May alone, with prices growing by 0.3 per cent. An increase of 0.8 per cent was recorded in April.
Dublin outperformed the rest of the country last month, with a growth in prices of 0.5 per cent. Homes were changing hands for 1.4 per cent more than in May 2012.
Outside of the capital, the market grew only marginally – with prices up just 0.1 per cent compared to the same month last year.
Reacting to the figures, David McNamara of Davy Stockbrokers said there were some positive signs in the market, after the expiry of mortgage interest relief at the end of 2012 depressed trade in the first quarter of the year. He said:
Stripping through the volatility over recent months points to a stabilisation in property prices. The index in May is at the same level as it was in July of last year, interjected by swings in the index at the turn of the year.
Constrained mortgage lending and an increased supply of repossessed homes mean the outlook for prices is uncertain, but improved affordability and rising rents may underpin house prices going forward.
House prices in Dublin are now down 55 per cent compared to the peak of the housing boom in early 2007, with the national index down by 50 per cent in the same period.