Morning top 5: 'Help-to-buy' scheme opens for applications; and manhunt intensifies in Turkey

The top stories on Newstalk.com this morning

Two separate reports released today show increases in house prices across the country last year.

According to Daft.ie, prices around the country rose by 8% - however a separate survey from MyHome.ie puts the annual rise at 5.5%.

Meanwhile, house-hunters can apply for the 'help-to-buy' scheme - introduced in October's budget - online from today. The scheme will give first time buyers of new homes 5% back on the price of their property.

****

New footage has been released which appears to show the suspected gunman in the Istanbul attack filming himself walking around the popular tourist destination of Taksim Square. 

The video comes as police continue to launch raids in the hunt for the attacker who killed 39 people in a nightclub on New Year's Eve.

Deputy prime minister Numan Kurtulmus said authorities are close to identifying the gunman after finding his fingerprints and getting a basic description of him.

****

A man has died after he was shot by police in Huddersfield near the M62 motorway, West Yorkshire Police says.

The man was shot during a "pre-planned operation" at around 6pm, a spokesman said.

The case is being referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC), which said its investigators were at the scene.

****

A new poll in the Irish Daily Mail says support for party Fianna Fáil is at 31% - up 7 points since last summer's vote.

When people were asked who they would back, Fine Gael received 28% support.

Sinn Féin remain unchanged at 16%, Labour were down 1 to 6%, while the AAA-PBP were up 1 to 4%.

The figures come from research firm 'Ireland Thinks', who interviewed a random sample of over 1,000 adults last month.

****

A Republican-held Congress sits for the first time in the US today, with an aim of eliminating the Affordable Care Act.

Republicans in coming weeks will try to steer legislation through Congress using procedures that would not require Democratic cooperation. Their bill, which has not been unveiled, is expected to repeal Obamacare, but postpone the actions for two or three years while also maintaining some of the law's provisions.

"We're going to fight as hard as ever to protect the ACA (Affordable Care Act)," said Representative Steny Hoyer, the House of Representatives' second-ranking Democrat.