What’s going on?
It’s a funny old market out there at the moment.
One week we expect a ghost town as the Central Bank weighs into the mortgage market – yet we see a huge flurry of activity.
The next, we see parts of the market go dead quiet, while others that have sat dormant heat up dramatically.
It’s hard to take the pulse of the property market at the moment, even for us on the front line speaking to buyers and sellers alike on a daily basis. But we feel like the market is a coiled spring, just waiting to be released.
A pause for breath: just a rest stop or the top of a rollercoaster?
The uncertainty over the proposed Central Bank mortgage rules first super-charged the market in the last few months of 2014, which – combined with the soon-to-expire tax relief scheme for investment properties – saw a race to get purchases closed before the end of the year and before any draconian measures were imposed.
In the end we had to wait until the last days of January before the Central Bank finally made their ruling (more on that news here and our financial expert’s views here). In that time and since, the market has been holding it’s breath, waiting to see the nation’s reaction to the new proposed rules.
And the reaction was largely flat.
We haven’t spoken to one First Time Buyer who was surprised or deeply upset by the rules. Those who are in a position to buy and are mortgage approved know they have approximately 6 months to find their first home in order to claim their existing mortgage offer. But many are already comfortably over the required deposit sum and largely unaffected by the rules.
For trader-uppers again it was of little surprise to those already with an eye out for their next home. Of course there are many others who will find themselves trapped in their existing homes a little longer until they catch up with the 20% equity they require for their next home – but many of them were waiting for the market to rise anyway.
And they are likely to get their wish as the new rules accidentally restricts demand of second-hand homes coming on the market, which most likely has added fuel to the flames of house price increases…
It’s still Demand vs Supply.. But it’s patchy
Available stock levels are still very low, yet demand persists despite the Central Bank’s rules.
But it’s patchy.
In the last two weeks of February we have great demand for a whole mix of properties on our books. In February alone we “Sale Agreed” eleven properties in our new Blackrock Office (after only opening it in late January!) ranging from a Herbert Park apartment, to a detached house in Foxrock, a semi-detached in Meath and two investment apartments in Sandyford. We also sold a couple of sites that were highly prized by numerous resurgent builders and developers.
Yet in the last week the phones have gone quiet again.
Funnily enough some of our mid-range properties in typical Dublin suburbs are suddenly surprisingly quiet. While some of our more impressive, high-value homes are flying with interest.
One such example is this gorgeous penthouse in Donnybrook, which has had some slow months and is suddenly receiving offers heading quickly towards it’s asking price.
Another is this Foxrock home with an €850,000 price tag, which has a troop of eager buyers looking to see it this weekend.
So the buyers are still out there… But where are the sellers?
There are definitely still buyers out there in all tiers of the market. But many are biding their time to see what the market does, hoping and praying that the incessant rise is over, at least temporarily enough so they can rush in and secure a good deal on their next home.
But while the buying frenzy has stopped and is taking stock, it doesn’t seem like there are any more properties coming to the market – not in the numbers we need them to to return to a normal functioning market.
Without more active sellers, buyers will be patient no longer, especially those who’s mortgage approval will lapse in a few months time. And the rush will be back on to buy whatever is available.
Smart vendors are preparing to market their properties now – in anticipation. 2015 could be a good year to move if you get the right deal on your home – but it comes down to finding your next home too and that depends on more stock coming available.
If you are thinking about selling your home or just looking for advice, you can contact Ben via firstname.lastname@example.org or directly on 0831154109. Plus Churches have recently announced their partnership with Irish Home Magazine that will see Churches properties advertised for sale in Dublin’s biggest property magazine FOR FREE!