Conference Panel on the Property Market

Below are the presentation slides and the audio of the panel I chaired at the Irish economy conference on January 27th. Ronan’s presentation received a fair bit of coverage, understandably, but all the presentations were well received. The full programme is here, and video of the talks will be up later.


Ronan Lyons (Oxford)

Residential Site Value Tax: Valuation, Implementation & Fiscal Outcomes

Michelle Norris (UCD)
Pathways Through Mortgage Arrears

Rob Kitchin (NUIM)
Prospects for the Irish Property Market

Author: Stephen Kinsella

Senior Lecturer in Economics at the University of Limerick.

16 thoughts on “Conference Panel on the Property Market”

  1. Interesting presentation by Ronan Lyons – it would undoubtedly radically increase the efficiency of the state over time.
    Although I feel for Hobbit like individuals who farm their backyard acre.

    But it will not balance the books – none of these efficiency taxes can “balance the books” in this monetory system as these physical savings create more physical surpluses that cannot be taxed.
    (Refer to new car tax / VRT rate structure for cars , it results in less tax revenue over time when credit production is static / declining as less oil is consumed and therefore less is available to tax)

    If people did somehow manage to “balance the books” no tokens would be available for commerce.
    More money must be produced to eat up the new surplus created , otherwise it is transfered abroad.

    I really can’t see how you can combine nation state like taxes over a now embedded market state structure.
    The private debts must be written off before this will be successful.

  2. It would have been interesting to have had the Irish Times property pornstars give their famous “the market is just about to turn” Spiel immediately before Rob Kitchin’s pièce de resistance.

    The presentation should be sellotaped to the front of every estate agency in the country.

  3. Creating a standard and robust way to tax property is difficult. My issue with site values is that it may overvalue land versus building size/quality. Many of the older Dublin suburbs have houses with long back gardens. There is no development potential and it is questionable if owners derive much value from it. It just happens to be there. Will such owners be able to surrender the final third of their garden? I’d guess a smaller south facing back garden is more valued than a long north facing one etc. And either way, given the Irish climate, internal space is much more important than external.

    Implementing a system that isn’t based on market values could create some interesting price movements. Buying a semi-d with a long back yard mightn’t be as attractive as a new detached house squeezed onto a small plot.

    Whatever method is decided on, I’d like to see it implemented quickly and in full. None of this nonsense about easing it in by gradually increasing the level of tax over five years.

  4. Anyone else getting this error message when trying to access Kitchin’s presentation?

    The requested url /geary/static/podcasts/ieconf/presentations/RobKitchin.pptx was not found on this server. The error may be due to a broken link however please check that you typed the URL correctly and whether the file is .htm or .html

  5. @Ninap
    Yeah , I can’t access it either.
    Google this cracker of a report from July 2010 & you might find out where Kitchin is coming from.

    No 59 – July 2010 A Haunted Landscape: Housing and Ghost …

    Funnily enough I can’t remember it on this Blog at the time………..

  6. I had no problems with the Kitchin presentation . Maybe the IPAV have attacked the UCD server in union with Anonymous in the meantime.

  7. Dork – I just had a quick scan of that link and saw this :

    Derek Brawn (2009) details that between 2004 and 2007 there were 55 sites in Dublin 2 and 4, totalling 62 acres, which sold for a collective value of €2.01bn.

    Can you imagine the difference if €2bn had been invested in the train network and green energy ?

  8. @ All,

    We’ve just changed the format of some of the slides from Powerpoint (.ppt or .pptx) to PDF (um – .pdf) which is better for distribution. So changing the file extension on the broken links above should work. Ronan’s was already a PDF.

    The links on the conference site have been updated, but it might take a short while before the UCD server publishes the new links (there’s a lag between a webpage being updated and it going live)

  9. @Seafoid
    Yeah – all the guys with concrete still in their Brains blame the model train / tram freaks – its hard to explain from a social perspective really.

    I think it may have something with Englands post war housing reconstruction & the reimportation of that meme into 70s Ireland.

  10. Rob Kitchin’s presentation is magnificent

    I thought this observation was one of the best :

    “We need robust housing planning models using demographic and labour market data at fine spatial scales as the foundations to revised development plans before embarking on any new major house building programmes”

    Presumably FF and FG would need to be melted down in a steel furnace first and then reshaped into something appropriate to the 21st century.

    His slide 14 Demographic trends
    seems like the final word on the aisling geal that was NCB’s “2020 vision, Ireland’s demographic dividend ”

  11. My reaction to Rob Kitchin’s presentation — “if it needs to be done, tis better that it is done quickly”. A key policy and business planning message — the equilibrating process in these markets should not be delayed indefinitely which could only lead to long-term stagnation. Many current government policy moves seem aimed at slowing rather than encouraging market clearing equilibrium.

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