Property report claims 17% of houses empty

A PROPERTY report claims that up to 345,000 or 17% of all houses in Ireland is empty and that any intervention in the slumped sector, like NAMA, could delay rather help recovery in the property market.

The University College Dublin (UCD) research reveals a striking difference in empty houses in regions, with vacancy levels in the greater Dublin area at 11.5% compared with 20% in the rest of the State.

Nationally, up to 17.43% of housing is empty, says the report.

A further downward shift in house prices was inevitable, said lead author of the report Dr Brendan Williams, but the intervention of NAMA could lead to sellers keeping prices artificially inflated.

“The identified vacancy levels have major consequences for the future prospects and valuations of development land.

“Valuations of development land based on the expected sale of completed developments will need to be revised severely downward to reflect their current use and limited development potential. This may be resisted by vendors and suppliers who have committed to development costs which will not be reflected in price reductions.”

The joint UCD and Dublin Institute of Technology research says there is now an oversupply of 170,000 houses in Ireland, when account is taken of the number of holiday homes, obsolete properties and market vacancy rate.

Areas of Dublin with large vacancy rates include Dublin South with 8,000 empty homes (8%), Fingal with 13,000 (13%) idle properties and Dublin City with 30,000 empty units (12.5%).

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