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News : International Last Updated: Sep 25, 2009 - 7:00:33 AM


International House Price Comparisons 2009: Dublin plummets but remains expensive; US average for management level house is $363,401; Most inexpensive at $112,675
By Finfacts Team
Sep 24, 2009 - 4:50:59 AM

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This 4-bedroom 1,646 sq. feet house is located in Blackrock, in the South Dublin suburbs. The asking price on Daft.ie is €980,000 ($1,372,000 at rate of $1.40), which would put it among the most expensive of US markets - - but markets for superior houses.

The European Housing Review 2009, the annual report of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), which was published last March, said that despite the Irish housing boom, Ireland still has worse housing conditions than other countries with similar living standards, with floor areas per person of around a fifth less than the western European average, even though a large number of dwellings (45%) are detached houses.

Land is scarce in Ireland - - a country that is 4% urbanised compared with 28% in France.

International House Price Comparisons 2009: The average price of a management level house in Dublin is $1,127,843 (€805,600) compared with $2.1 million (€1.56 million) in 2007. The overall US average of more than 300 markets around the nation is $363,401, but in Grayling, Michigan, the "canoe capital of the world," the price is $112,675.

The 2009 Coldwell Banker Home Price Comparison Index was published on Wednesday and is an "apples-to-apples" comparison of similar homes in so-called "move-up buyer" neighbourhoods. It compares the prices charged for 2,200-square-foot, four-bedroom, two-and-one-half bath, single-family homes in more than 300 US markets and a total of 57 markets in 29 countries outside of the United States, with those international home prices averaging $487,844 in US dollars.  

According to the report, in 84 of the US markets the real estate company Coldwell Banker covers, the sample home price averages under $200,000.

La Jolla, California is the most expensive location at $2.125 million. The more than $2 million disparity is up from 2004, when the spread between the most expensive and most affordable towns was $1.5 million.

La Jolla was joined on the most expensive list by 13 other California markets while Grayling was one of 20 Midwest communities on the most affordable list. Internationally, Singapore was the most expensive market for the same type of home, $1.9 million US dollars, compared with Salinas, Ecuador, which at $69,375 US dollars was the most affordable studied international market.

"La Jolla, loosely translated, means 'the jewel' in Spanish," said Rick Hoffman, a Coldwell Banker broker in San Diego. "It's always been a place everybody goes to. The weather is excellent. There's great shopping, restaurants and recreation. In non-rush-hour traffic you're only 15 minutes from downtown San Diego."

Dublin was the most expensive location internationally in 2007 and was only beaten in the US by Beverly Hills, California.

In the island nation of Singapore, most management type families would live in high rise condominiums, because of the scarcity of land.

In total, 11 US markets exceeded the $1 million average price for the surveyed home.  Manhattan in New York City was not included in the study because of the lack of comparable single-family homes. 

In the markets where the average price is under $200,000, the monthly mortgage costs should not exceed $1,200.

The house in Grayling, on the basis of a 20% deposit and a 5.5%, 30-year fixed rate loan would have a monthly mortgage payment of about $512 a month.

The price of a house in Brisbane, Australia would cost $217,071 US dollars, while in Ireland outside Dublin the average price is $534,360 in Cork and $746,874 in Galway. 

In Cork, the average price was $1,630,061 in 2007.

For more background on Irish house prices and land rezoning system, click here.

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