In the last couple of months, I’ve sensed a growing impatience among those who, but for the bust, would have been first-time buyers at some point over the past two years or so. Granted this is purely anecdotal, but it’s worth exploring whether there’s anything to be said for the following line of reasoning:
“There are lots of us out there who would have bought, if the recession hadn’t happened. While there’s lot of stock for sale out there, much of it is apartments and in areas no-one really wants. The properties I want are the properties everyone like me wants and they’re going to go fast when the market turns, therefore I should be on the lookout for a good property now, so I don’t miss out.”
To shed some light on this, I’ve had a look at six types of property (anything more granular would start to lose its readability): apartments and houses in each of Dublin (Dub, in the charts below), the other four cities (City) and the rest of the country (ROC). I’m cheating a little here, as “apartments” actually refers to 1-bed and 2-bed properties, while houses refers to properties of between three and five bedrooms, but you get the gist. I will present these charts with minimal comment, so people can make up their own minds about what signals they send.
The first chart below shows how the six market segments have developed over the past year. Each line shows the number of properties listed on daft during 2009, relative to the average for late 2008, when the stock for sale nationwide peaked. Dublin has clearly seen a reduction in the total number of properties listed for sale, by about 15%. Outside the main cities, particularly for apartments, the number looks like it’s still rising.
I’ve deliberately put these numbers on the same scale and not in absolute numbers so that the trends can be compared. However, that’s not to say the absolute levels is unimportant. The following graph shows approximately what percentage of properties in each segment was listed for sale on daft in December 2009, based on Census 2006 figures.
So, there you have it. I’ll stick to my promise of making minimal comment, but am happy to take things up in the comments section, should anyone be so inclined!