Average time taken to sell house falls to 8 months

THE average time it takes to sell a house has fallen to eight months from 10 at the start of the year with prices expected to plunge 12% this year.

There are now around 60,000 properties on the market, up from 20,000 at the peak of the housing boom.

According to the latest report from property website Daft.ie, the average time to sell in Dublin is four months, which is similar to late 2008.

However, in Munster, the duration is 10 months compared to a year in Connacht and Ulster. In Munster it took around five months to sell a property in 2008.

Friends First economist Jim Power said the rise in the stock of properties on the market probably reflects a view that the market may be starting to bottom out.

“Having failed to anticipate the magnitude of the imminent house price collapse at the beginning of 2007, I am now far from convinced that the market is yet bottoming out,” he said.

Mr Power believes average prices could fall by 12% this year and completions could be lower than 12,000.

“Any meaningful recovery in 2011 looks unlikely. The housing market is not yet out of the woods, nor is the overall economy. A little progress made, but considerably more to be made,” he said.

In Cork city the average asking price is now €241,009, which is down just over 16% in the year and 35% from the peak.

Prices in Dublin city centre fell by 6% since April and have now fallen by nearly 50% from their peak of almost €430,000 in early 2007. Elsewhere in Dublin, prices typically fell by 4% to 5% and are now almost 40% below their 2007 peaks.

The total stock of properties for sale in the capital has risen slightly in the last three months to over 5,500.

Asking prices for residential properties around the country fell by 4.2% during the second quarter of 2010. The national average asking price for property has fallen 37% since the peak and now stands at €220,000.

In Cork and Limerick prices fell by 3% and 2% respectively during the last three months, while prices in Waterford fell by 7%.

Nationwide the largest falls in the country were in Donegal, Cavan and Monaghan, where asking prices fell by an average of 11%, having been static for the past six months.

Daft economist, Ronan Lyons said: “While falls in asking prices are slower than last year, the market is still in adjustment and the total stock for sale, particularly outside the main cities, remains high. Nonetheless, evidence from Dublin in particular shows that properties are selling.

“Almost half the number of properties listed in the capital in January are now sale agreed or sold.”


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