House completions down 33% but output has rebounded
House completions fell by a third in the second quarter compared to the same period last year, but new data suggests output has rebounded since lockdown measures were eased and construction sites reopened in May.
The Goodbody Analytics BER Housebuilding Tracker for the second quarter of 2020, published on Tuesday, indicates that the 33 per cent year-on-year reduction is the largest annual decline in housebuilding in eight years.
However, Goodbody says the figures are “ahead of our expectations”, and suggest that housing output “has rebounded somewhat” after construction sites reopened in the middle of May.
Goodbody still expects housing completions to fall by 20 per cent year-on-year but has revised up its estimate from 14,000 to 16,500.
For 2021 it now expects 19,500 completions, which is up from its previous estimate of 16,000.
The figures are still less than half of what is required to tackle the housing crisis, with the Central Bank estimating that 34,000 new homes must be built every year for the next decade to meet demand.
Dublin experienced the largest decline in housing output in the quarter – down 48 per cent – but large-scale declines were seen across the State. Scheme completions fell by 37 per cent; apartments by 35 per cent; and single properties by 24 per cent.