Thursday, May 08 16:16:37
The recovery in the property market which began in earnest last year has spread outside of Dublin and other urban areas according to a new study from property website MyHome.ie.
The research, which is based on an analysis of the property price register, shows that the number of property sales rose in 25 of the 26 counties last year.
Overall there were 29,772 property sales recorded in 2013 compared to 25,142 in 2012, an increase of 18pc. There was also an increase in the amount of money spent on property in 21 counties.
Dublin led the way in terms of property sales last year with over 10,000 transactions and E3.6 billion spent.
While Dublin accounts for over a third of overall sales, the MyHome.ie study shows that sales are increasing at a faster rate in a dozen other counties.
They include several counties in the main commuter belt, a couple in the south east, as well as a number of counties in the border area which had been struggling for sales in recent years.
While many of the increases are coming off a low base, the likes of Leitrim (57pc), Cavan (55pc), Roscommon (36pc), Monaghan (32pc) and Longford (24pc) all saw sales shoot upwards in 2013.
Commuter belt counties Kildare, Meath, Westmeath (24pc) and Wicklow (23pc) all showed an increase as did Waterford (25pc) and Carlow (41pc). Galway was the star performer in the west, recording sales growth of 32pc.
Laois was the only county where sales fell last year, dropping by 3pc while all but six other counties were able to record double-digit growth in sales.
The Managing Director of MyHome.ie said it was very encouraging to see the level of house sales rising all over the country but she pointed out that the recovery was still in its early stages.
"We were surprised to see sales rise by as much as they did in several counties, especially in the border region and Waterford which have struggled more than most since the collapse in property prices in 2007. People are recognising that there's value in the market and this along with pent up demand is what is driving sales.
However it is important to point out that the recovery is happening at a slower rate in several counties - for example in the midlands - and that the total level of transactions is still under 30,000. If the Irish property market was functioning properly we should be seeing double or treble that level of sales. So we really need to see that figure rising and the Government and the banks have key roles to play in ensuring it does," Ms Keegan said.