Home ownership hits record low in Dublin

A quarter of residents in the capital are now renting...

Home ownership hits record low in Dublin

File photo

Home ownership in Dublin has fallen to its lowest level since records began, as the number of people renting in the capital increase.

Some 25% of Dublin residents are now renting, according to unpublished Central Statistics Office (CSO) figures seen by The Irish Times.

Six in 10 people (59.9%) living in the capital owned their own home during the third quarter of last year. This is down notably from the three in four residents owning their own homes when the CSO started compiling the data back in 2000.

In that year, just 10% of Dublin's residents were privately renting.

Declining ownership in Dublin mirrors a nationwide trend, though the fall has been greatest in the capital.

The number of Irish residents owning their own homes at the end of 2016 was 69.7%.

This is down from a peak of 80.1% in 1991, which placed the Irish among the biggest property owners in Europe. The last time ownership figures were so low in Ireland was the late 1960s.

The newspaper also reports that more people own their own homes in parts of Germany – which is known for its strong rental culture – than here.

'Seriously unaffordable'

In January, the International Housing Affordability Survey 2017 found that the cost of property in Dublin had reached "seriously unaffordable" levels and that the situation is only getting worse.

The Demographia study analysed the third quarter of 2016 and placed Dublin's 'median multiple' – the median house price divided by the median household income – at 4.7, up from 3.3 in 2011. Looking ahead, it predicted that "Dublin could be headed towards the severe unaffordability reached during the housing bust in 2008". 

To place this measurement in historical context, Ireland had a price-to-income multiple of less than 3.0 in the early 1990s. The current median house price was placed at €276,000, with median household income of €58,400.

It quoted UCD economist Colm McCarthy's warning that the cost of housing has risen far too rapidly in the Dublin area and his suggestions that a new housing "bubble" could be developing despite the market cooling policies of the Central Bank.