City sees rise in new builds


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THE number of house completions in Limerick City last year rose by a massive 130 per cent compared to 2011 figures, according to figures published by the Construction Industry Federation (CIF) this week. Limerick also saw an increase in the number of units where construction had commenced in 2012. Nationally, a total of 8,488 houses were built last year, which represents a drop of 1,992 or 19 per cent on the 2011 figure.


The latest CIF Housing Statistics Bulletin states that the largest number of house completions during 2012 were in Dublin, Cork and Galway respectively, while the largest drops were in Galway City (56 per cent), Kilkenny (46 per cent), Fingal (45 per cent) and Tipperary (41 per cent).
Limerick City recorded one of the highest increases in house completions ahead of Cork City (up 95 per cent) and South Dublin (38 per cent).
CIF Director General Tom Parlon warned that construction levels are well below the number of new houses required.
He commented: “2012 was a very difficult year for the Irish house building industry with the level of activity falling once more.  Previously the lowest level had been the 13,887 units that were built in 1970 when the records began, but the total for 2011 dropped below that mark and 2012 has seen a further fall in completions.
“There is no doubt that house building reached unsustainable levels during the boom years, but the industry has now gone through six successive years of decline.  The ESRI estimates that this country requires 15,000 – 20,000 new homes to be built each year but we are significantly below that figure. Unfortunately it looks like we will see another slight reduction in house building in 2013.”