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15 Aug

19% Fall in Planning Applications

With the ongoing weakness of the construction and property sectors evident across the country the latest national Housing Construction Index has shown that the decline in applications for planning permission continues across Ireland. For the first six months of 2012, the number of planning applications fell by 19 per cent when compared with the same period last year. 

 Only three counties – Donegal, Sligo and Leitrim – recorded increases, but they were marginal ones. 

The largest falls were witnessed in Kildare (-41 per cent), Kerry (-38 per cent) and Clare (-35 per cent). 

Commencement notices, which are a real time barometer of construction activity, also decreased over the six months with a 7 per cent drop noted. Again, only three counties – Westmeath, Cork and Cavan – saw a slight rise in commencement activity. 

Across the island of Ireland, 10,287 individual residential projects applied for planning permission. They are more spread out across a number of regions, rather than just in the large concentration of Dublin and the greater Dublin area as previously seen. 

The National Housing Construction Index is prepared by Link2Plans from information that is provided by local authorities under planning and building control regulations. 

Rory Lavelle- Managing Director of NPC Comments” The latest figures published indicating a 19% decline in planning applications across Ireland reflects the general negative sentiment but also importantly I believe the is a lack of credit available. Tender prices have fallen substantially over the last number of years and represent exceptional value. Despite this, the number of new builds and planning application continues to fall. Projected construction costs are a critical factor in any project whether speculative or not. With such value currently available within the market there are compelling reasons to take advantage of this and undertake building projects now but this is not the case. One needs to look at the underlying reasons and lack of credit is a major obstacle! 

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