Couple On Just Shy Of €90K Cannot Afford To Buy House In Greater Dublin Area

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The average market value of a new three-bedroom semi-detached home in the Greater Dublin Area is €464,036.

This depressing information forms part of the detail found in the Real Cost of New Housing Delivery Report 2023 from the Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland.

Their report examines affordability within the scenario of two first- time buyers employed as a garda and a nurse.

The average combined incomes of the two professions (with 10 years’ experience) in Ireland is €89,000.

For those who earn less than this income level on average, the disparity between their borrowing capacity and the cost of purchasing a property will be even greater.

As of December 2023, the Greater Dublin Area is the most unaffordable region, followed by Galway. The most affordable locations are the Northwest, Midlands and Southeast.

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TABLE 2: Affordability of purchasing a new three-bedroom semi-detached home (combined wages of

two gardaí/nurses after 10 years’ service or two executive officers after c. nine years’ service).

County Average purchase price Average combined gross salary Maximum loan 10%


Total purchase limit Affordability result
(new three-bed semi)
GDA(Greater Dublin Area) €464,036 €89,000 €356,000 €46,404 €402,404 -€61,632
Cork €383,000 €89,000 €356,000 €38,300 €394,300 €11,300
Galway €420,000 €89,000 €356,000 €42,000 €398,000 -€22,000
Northwest €310,000 €89,000 €356,000 €31,000 €387,000 €77,000
Northeast €351,138 €89,000 €356,000 €35,114 €391,114 €39,976
Midlands €318,564 €89,000 €356,000 €31,856 €387,856 €69,292
Southeast €340,222 €89,000 €356,000 €34,022 €390,022 €49,800

Figures excluding First Homes Ireland  Scheme.                                                                                                                                Source: SCSI research.

Help to Buy Scheme assumed to be included within the 10% deposit amount.

The SCSI survey of our property professionals highlighted that there is a confluence of factors that influence house price movements.

Other reasons include the rise in construction costs and the restricted availability of second-hand homes to purchase. Another trend noted in the commentary from SCSI agents is how more and more homeowners hold off on listing their properties until they find a suitable home to purchase.

The cost of finance and its impact on property values is becoming more prevalent within the survey results. The increasing cost of living coupled with a higher cost of borrowing and lower repayment capacity is influencing market values. New properties are viewed as the most attractive purchase, especially for first- time buyers. Properties requiring construction work and second- hand properties are of lesser interest for the general home buyer according to respondents to the survey.

During the reporting period, the Irish economy has performed well, despite facing challenges such as high energy costs for society and business, general higher costs of living for citizens, and geopolitical concerns and their impact on costs and investment.

With employment surpassing pre-pandemic levels by 12%, showing remarkable job creation, there has been a strong demand for housing, although the limited supply is a noticeable challenge.