Census 2016: Home ownership in decline and rent prices on the increase

Jane Richards
April 21, 2017

This contrasts starkly with the more than 225,000 extra homes that were built between 2006 and 2011.

Surprisingly, housing growth - which relates to the number of builds - grew by only 0.4pc between 2011 and 2016, with 8,800 new homes.

The figures reveal that more than 180,000 homes are now vacant, while rent in Dublin has soared by 30 per cent.

Roughan Mac Namara of Focus Ireland said that action needs to be taken "urgently" on the number of vacant homes.

Rural vacancy rates remain high - Blacklion in Cavan has the highest rate on the list with nearly half of all homes (46.4%) being empty, followed by Keshcarrigan (45.6%) in Leitrim and Kilgarvan (43.1%) in Kerry.

The survey found that renting was more common among those under the age of 35 and beyond this, people tended to own their houses. Many of these people are the "hidden homeless"; those thousands of families in Ireland who are living in substandard, overcrowded or unsafe accommodation, unable to move or demand better accommodation because they have no other options.

This age has steadily crept up over the past quarter of a century, with an equivalent age of 26 in 1991.

This year's stats have shown that the average weekly rent rose by a whopping 16.8% between the years 2011 and 2016.

The highest growth in rent was in Dublin city, which increased by nearly 30% while rises in excess of 20% were also recorded in Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown, Fingal, South Dublin and Kildare.

The CSO results show that a total of 2,003,645 houses and apartments in the State were enumerated in the 2016 Census.

There are 95,013 permanent households with more people than rooms wich equates to just under 10% of the population.

The number of vacant dwellings in Longford has fallen to 3,102 - down from 4,075 in 2011.

There was also a drop in the number of vacant dwellings, including holiday homes, by 15%.

"We see house price growth remaining in positive territory on a year-on-year basis for a while yet, with the annual rate of increase now set in our view to be in the 7-12 percent range over the next few months", he said.

The statistics, which are derived from 2016 Census data, indicate a sharp reduction in the number of vacant dwellings across the country.

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