Level of housing output needs to treble

The output of housing in Ireland needs to treble over the coming years in order to meet demand, according to the Goodbody housing tracker report.

Last year housing output grew by 77pc.

However, with medium-term housing demand running at around 35,000 houses per year, Goodbody said that it was likely that the Government will also need to significantly increase its housebuilding plans to ensure targets are met.

"New players such as Cairn and Glenveagh are expected to grow their output significantly over the coming years, but will only represent around 10pc of our estimated demand," Dermot O’Leary, chief economist at Goodbody, said.

Last year 9,513 new homes were issued with a Building Energy Rating (BER), up 77pc on the previous year, and it is estimated that between 1,000 and 1,500 homes were completed without at BER certificate.

This compares to the 19,271 electricity connections, which Goodbody believe is "significantly" overstating the level of new build in Ireland at the current time.

The Dublin area accounted for just over half of the new homes built last year, with a further 22pc completed in the commuter counties of Wicklow, Meath and Kildare.

Approximately 40pc of the population lives in these four counties, according to Census 2016.

Overall, the most popular type of unit built in Ireland in 2017 was a semi-detached house, accounting for almost four in ten of the total builds.

Detached units accounted for one in five of the units built, while apartments accounted for 16pc of the total.

Unsurprisingly apartments were the most popular type of new build in Dublin, where 1,477 units (31pc) were completed.

The capital city accounted for 95pc of the apartment units built in Ireland last year.

"This reflects the higher cost of building in this sector and the fact that it is uneconomical in the vast majority of the country to build apartments given current sales prices," Mr O’Leary said.

New guidelines to reduce the cost of apartment delivery are due to be implemented this year.

David Kieran