86 thoughts on “Residential Property Price Register”

  1. My last comment seems to apply only to open office, if you open the file in a plain text editor the characters are readable.

    Thank you for the link.

  2. Given that I understand this new database includes cash transactions, with the CSO be modifying their own index with the new information?

  3. @Rory Mc Monagle

    Does it? That’s excellent news if so. Looking at the asking prices on daft/myhome it seems as if lots of people are still living in la-la land with regards property prices. Hopefully seeing real transaction prices will wake them up.

  4. Below is the elementary property valuation error that bankrupted Ireland;
    http://www.independent.ie/opinion/letters/bubble-values-3034584.html
    Professor Neil Crosby’s online response to this Irish Independent letter
    “Bubble values” 29th February 2012

    “The analysis may be simplistic but unfortunately it is not flawed.
    Banks ask valuers to tell them what the market value/exchange price is
    at a point in time and then lend vast amounts over time based on that
    simple number. The surveyor gives them that simple number and do not
    think it is their job to tell the banks that the question they have been
    asked is stupid on its own and what they should have asked for is the
    underlying value. It was obvious in 2005 and 2006 that prices in the
    property market were higher than could be sustained by any rational cash
    flow analysis. But in a culture that rewards individuals for short term
    performance rather than longer term perspective, it was in neither the
    bankers’ nor the valuers’ interests to stop it. I cannot see anything in
    what the UK regulatory authorities have proposed that makes me think
    they understand the role of property valuation in driving asset bubbles
    and will prevent it all happening again sometime in the 2020s.”

    Neil Crosby
    Professor of Real Estate and Planning
    University of Reading

    John Corcoran – Neil Crosby is quite right to point out the critical and corrupting role of valuers and banks in the property bubble. RICS and other property related professionals should hang their heads in shame for not raising the alarm bells and not challenging landowners, banks and homeowners about the outrageous rise in property valuations which had no relationship with reality or ‘underlying value’. Their role is similar to that of ratings agencies which were paid to sign off triple A ratings by their clients for junk.financial instruments most of which related to property assets..Sadly it does not require a university professor to point this out.
    Anyone with a modicum of experience in property and development knew we were headed for trouble and I am sure I was not the only person to flag it up. If these so called professionals had been held to account by their so called professional bodies ( as the General Medical Council regulates doctors) half of them would have been struck off. Their primary responsibilty should have been to the reputation of the valuation profession and not their commission. In many countries property is taxed and valuers are independent or are part of the state.

    Radical reform is required or we will surely revisit this crisis again in the near future.

    *Neil Crosby Professor of Real Estate and Planning University of Reading

    Neil has been Professor of Real Estate at the University of Reading since 1994 having been previously Professor at Oxford Brookes and lecturer at Reading and Nottingham Trent Universities. Before that he was a practising valuation surveyor in a combined residential and commercial property private practice firm based in Nottingham. He specialises in commercial property appraisal and the commercial Landlord and Tenant relationship and has undertaken a series of major research studies funded by the UK Government and the UK property industry in these areas. In 2002 he was awarded the International Real Estate Society’s annual achievement award for his work in real estate research, education and practice. He has published well over 100 papers on the various topics listed above and the third edition of his textbook on Property Investment Appraisal with Andrew Baum was published in 2007.

    *John Corcoran

    John is a distinguished postgraduate of the London School of Economics and Political Science and was awarded the degree Master of Science in Economics in 1978. While at the LSE he studied under Professor of Economics Basil Yamey and Professor of Accounting and Finance Will Baxter. Professor Yamey was a member of the UK’s Monopolies and Mergers Commisssion and an authority on monopolies and cartels. Professor Baxter was a world authority on inflation accounting and valuations and developed the concept “deprival value

  5. @ The distinguished postgraduate of the London School of Economics and Political Science and was awarded the degree Master of Science in Economics in 1978. While at the LSE he studied under…

    This is just spam now.

    Who cares if you got a certificate from Bertie’s old school around the time he wasn’t there?

    An old pal of mine has a saying…”Your trumpet always sounds louder when someone else blows it.”

    And no rude joke please PRG

  6. more troublesome is the remote rural context: typically townlands only are given, which could include a fair number of hovels/mansions/swamps/etc

  7. @Ito

    Haven’t looked at those, but some transactions are not at market price, for example trust property, family arrangements etc.

  8. @grumpy that D14-for-6K was flagged as ‘Full Market Price’. Plays hell with the averages I’d say

  9. At long long last!
    If I may offer some tips for researchers, as I see from thepropertypin and other places, plenty are starting to number-crunch:
    (1) The real use of this is for individual transactions, not market-level analysis. You have an area, village or street in mind, and with this you can go on and – using your knowledge of particular properties – see the price level.
    (2) When it comes to market-level analysis, the only really cast-iron contribution of the register is sales volumes, which show – roughly – that volumes in 2012 are set to recover from 2011 post-IMF levels to 2010 levels.
    (3) If you must talk about prices, best to talk about median prices (and perhaps the other quartiles). As some comments have already highlighted here, using mean averages will be affected by errors in data entry by solicitors, with one property in Limerick selling for €127m and others in “leafy” parts of Dublin selling for thousands not hundreds of thousands.

    Interestingly, the median price rose in Q3 compared to Q2 in all four regions I looked at (Dublin, rest of Leinster, Munster and Connacht-Ulster).

    Needless to say, property nerds such as myself are looking to see what else can be done but the primary limitation of the propertypriceregister.ie dataset is the small number of columns it has (address, date and price – but no features of the property such as size, type, etc). Hopefully we’ll be able to match up transactions with listings, thus giving a whole range of extra columns, but that’s not an easy task.

  10. “… one property in Limerick selling for 127m euro …”

    How do such ridiculous errors make it to publication?

  11. @P North

    The land registry records say that property in Limerick was bought by a retired Bond villain called Mr Fat Finger.

    @JC

    Maybe I’m grumpier than most, but I suspect the spamming is now getting counter-productive in its effect on those basically empathetic to your arguments.

  12. Anybody can be struck by Fat Finger syndrome, but shouldn’t PSRA people be testing for nonsensical outliers in the data at pre-publication stage?

  13. Its a good start. But no more than that. What a pity some additional work wasnt done (even crowdsourced) to make the data a bit more granular – number of beds, that sort of stuff. Im sure it will come
    To me what I find jumps out is the level of variation even in small areas. Some houses in the same estate selling for 150 when the asking price on the EA site is 450! Houses being valued at 270 sold later that year for 80, that sort of thing. I suspect as people drill into this a lot of EA will find the water receding fast.

  14. The property price register is disappointing in its searchability and the lack of ease of download. Worst of all is the lack of ancillary information for each transaction (floor area, no. of bedrooms, property type). This information is not being captured.

    It is also diappointing that they have not linked to the land registry digital maps.

    With that said, it is better than nothing and it has been delivered. I suspect we have the IMF to thank for that more than anybody else.

    Overall, I am disappointed at the lack of ambition and the lack of inderdepartmental cooperation. If the Property Registration Authority and Ordnance Survey Ireland get their hands on it we will eventually end up with a proper register and interface.

    John Corcoran’s point is well made. We need a rental value database to go hand in hand with the property price register. This information should be readily available from the PRTB. Failing to create such a register will neatly show that the permanent government haven’t really learned any of the lessons of the crash.

    Seriously though JC, lose the stupid signature. A retailer with a postgrad from the LSE in 1978 isn’t exactly awe inspiring in an era where masters are now as common as degrees were when you graduated.

  15. I mean, if the numbers aren’t sanity-checked, then they’re all as unreliable as the ‘asking’ prices. I’ll shut up and go away now, sorry for the gushing enthusiasm

  16. @zhou_enlai
    This government’s decision to renege on their program for government
    policy to allow commercial tenants market rents,was the worst economic
    decision since the bank guarantee. It has ensured the destruction of
    tens of thousands of sustainable Irish businesses and jobs and the
    creation of a damaging two-tier commercial rental market. The government
    have aligned themselves with the commercial property cartel to ensure
    the Irish commercial property market will not recover and this will
    further damage the Irish economy. Any cost/benefit analysis would
    clearly show the error of this decision.
    This government still believes the propaganda of the property industry,
    the exact crew who wrecked the country. The economic logic is -if you
    massively over-rent commercial tenants until you destroy their
    businesses and jobs -this will help the Irish property market and
    increase the value of Irish property. This is one of a hat trick of
    disastrous Irish government decisions, the first was to allow the
    creation of the greatest property bubble of all times -second to
    guarantee all Irish banks liabilities and -third to allow all commercial
    tenants to be be bled dry by massive over-renting using ruinous Irish
    commercial lease law.

  17. Meanwhile John Corcoran, on the issues thrown up by the (not commercial) database here your views and interpretations are….?

  18. One huge factor that explains a lot of variation in prices is whether or not the property required refurbishment. With so much negative equity around, a large proportion of houses coming on the market (in Dublin at least) are executor sales, with property requiring extensive renovation. The effect on values is not just limited to the renovation costs, but also to the difficulty in getting bank credit for “doer-uppers”. For many houses requiring work, it is really only cash buyers that have a chance of purchase.

    Take, as a rather extreme example, the two houses next door to each other on Edenvale Road in Ranelagh (36 and 38). Here we have identical houses, side-by-side being sold within a few months of each other in 2011 – one cost 880k, the other 350k!

  19. Geraldine Clarke Chairperson of the Property Services Regulatory Authority, which has set up this propertypriceregister.ie, was on mornign Ireland this morning.

    Ms. Clarke said the website distinguished between apartments and house which it does not.

    Ms. Clarke also said one could search by road or locality which one could not.

    It is staggering that Ms. Clarke could have got these basic things wrong. I can only assume that she is a non-technical person and she was incorrectly briefed.

    However, I think that even chairpersons should have some technical knowledge. The general failure of people with technical backgrounds to rise to, or be appointed to, senior management in Irish bodies and corporations is profoundly worrying.

  20. @Brian Lucey
    Knowledge is preferred to ignorance.
    The theory of perfect markets is perfect information –not auctioneeers lies/spin and propaganda as featured in the Irish Times/MyHome.ie for the last 15 years.

  21. “…using mean averages will be affected by errors in data entry by solicitors, with one property in Limerick selling for €127m and others in “leafy” parts of Dublin selling for thousands not hundreds of thousands”

    Really!!! That’s why we use medians…bad stats…worse economics

  22. The IMF has done the country a favour by forcing this policy reform. The raw database is already being integrated/filtered over at propertypin.ie and probably elsewhere. There is now a working link to a google mapping facility created by a sophisticated user in less than two days (less than one work day!).

    The next step is for a property-oriented economist and/or geographer or other researcher to create a statistical model which allows anyone to type in any property in Ireland giving details about location, size and type and an estimated sale-able price is outputted. That would help to give price clarity for individuals/families in their financial planning etc. given the wild swing in prices over recent years – is such a web-facility feasible?

  23. Great to see the database up and running at last.

    Would love to see the size of properties included to help analysis of
    the numbers but should help buyers looking at specific areas to make
    more informed decisions.

  24. I understand this data was taken from Revenue’s tax database and Tom Lynch is quoted in SBP that “according to Revenue IT specialists it is not straightforward”. The database is clearly an unholy mess with no data validation at the input stage or publication stage as evidenced by street names in all caps and the fact that 150 of the houses which were sold and re-sold in the period supposedly lost half their value, with 10 losing more than 90%.

  25. Gregory – That database and mapping was done within two hours of the database going live. It is astonishing how poor the public service from the PRA is in terms of providing useful, easily downloadable, easily visualised data. I had expected this to be searchable by multiple criteria, with online cloropleth maps and some analytic capability (average/median/range by county (or DED…) over time sort of thing). It reeks to me of minimalism. Cynical minimalism.

  26. @Gregory Connor

    That is why there is such an emphasis in other countries in making data available in portable format. Private individuals can do the development so much quicker, better and cheaper than the public service. The fact that the data had to be downloaded area by area one month at a time subject to repeated captcha barrier is a digrace. Fair play to those who batteld through that mire.

  27. Zhou : we didnt. There was and is a bulk download facility. Within a few hours it had been done and was appearing in various places. Right now the problems are
    a) Addresses are inconsistent. The lack of a postcode system is really hampering finding out what is going on where. Estates appear in several addresses, houses are in places where the EA says they are (as opposed to where they actually are) and the addresses are misspelled and inconsistent.
    b) There is uncertainty bout how say partner sales are dealt with – if I sell half to a partner that can make it look like a massive loss in that area. No flag on that
    c) No flag on probate bed and breakfasting
    d) Some glaring fat finger errors.
    e) The lack of anything that makes a hedonic approach feasible
    f) Add to that the “look wot I designed meself, and sure I don’t know anything about databases” interface and we have a disgrace.
    g) No linkage to the property register
    h) Bloc sales appearing as single sales

    Right now on the propertypin its being crowdsource cleaned up it seems. Why should we not demand decent usable data? Its 2012 – this is something that would have been a joke in 1912.

  28. @ Zhou
    We entrusted the private sector to look after our banks and look how that turned out. Same with a lot of our services.
    I understand your frustration but I think that there is a false perception that the private sector is more responsive to the needs of consumers than the public sector. Am not sure this is true.
    This is, as Professor Lucey, says a good start. Well done to them for starting this. If the state had any business sense it would launch a premium service with the kind of things you’re looking for (it could be done relatively cheaply I think). Maybe companies are working on something as we speak – graphs and charts of house prices in a given area etc. Getting too much good info out to buyers is not in auctioneers’ interests though

  29. @Eureka

    I am not suggesting we should outsource to the private sector. I am suggesting that state bodies should at a minimum make data available in portable format. (I think this is govt policy but not a lot of people who should be doing it know it.) If the data is made accessible the public will use is cleverly and probably make applications available for free. That is why Manchester City is making all its data available to the public to parse, process and play with.

    @brianlucey

    I understood from comments on twitter that the data had to be dowloaded in blocks.

  30. @zhou
    You might do better to rail at the literacy standards the Law Society requires of members in practice…

    My belief is that the delay to release has been in even partly cleaning up the database. There are really no short-cuts to this other than eyeballs and judgement.

    As to why the PSRA couldn’t release a mapped version? I would say “wouldn’t”. The same illiterate solicitors who enter the data wrong will no doubt happily sue on behalf of the good names of clients whose houses were placed on the wrong side of the street… and our wonderful judicial system would pay out…

  31. @Brian Lucey
    +1

    What a missed opportunity, this website could have been so much more.

    @Eureka
    “We entrusted the private sector to look after our banks and look how that turned out”…Patrick Neary ring any bells??

  32. There is an emblematic contrast between the keen, high quality, speedy work done on this (often pro bono) by those who have got hold of the data in the last couple of days (note the fact that this took part of contributors’ weekend), and the ‘like pulling teeth’ lead-up to the site being launched as part of Troika driven ‘reform’.

    What does it say about motivation, commitment or competence that not even the most basic checks for duff data were carried out?

  33. Grumpy
    It depends on the sanctions. TCD run exams for about 10k undergrads. Figure 5 per student with say 5 questions each. 250k data elements. I suspect the quality of the data in the register is literally orders of magnitude lower than that of TCD, if by basic accuracy you mean getting the right grade (address) matched to the right student (house price). And then when you think that this public sector accuracy is repeated 20 times each may june, plus the leaving cert…
    It smacks of cba (couldnt be ..). Bring in a whackload of jobbridge interns, give some basic training in data validation, SQL, Python, GIS mapping etc… would have been a marvellous opportunity. Instead it looks like someone ran it up over a cup of coffee. In fact, a fag. A coffee takes 20 minutes.
    Id love to think some politician would take them on on this but given the levels of IT literacy in the oireachtas its doubtful.
    Note also that from what I understand a good chunk of the probono work was done by public sector employees (if you believe them). It got SFA to do with the location of the person (the biggest IT disasters happen in private sector ….why we had one just recently with database lookup tables going awry in Rightly Borked Scotties) and much more to do with management giving a brief and holding people to it.

  34. As with Apple’s replacement of Google Maps, if the errors etc in the database are corrected overtime and feedback is positively used to improve the system, the negativity will recede.

    @ bazza

    As for Ranelagh, I’m familiar with the main routes to places like Donnybrook and Leeson St but not Edenmore Rd.

    In Aug 2008, a house on Moyne Rd at €2.3m did seem a bit pricey.

    http://www.finfacts.ie/irishfinancenews/article_1014455.shtml

    When I first came to Dublin in 1978 I lived in slum called Grove Park off Lower Rathmines Road.

    I recall The Irish Times terming it the most densely populated street in Dublin – – and that wasn’t counting the mice.

  35. @MH

    Edenvale is parallel to Moyne and 2 streets over.

    When there is a 250% difference between houses sharing a wall I think we can definitely say the market is broken!

  36. @ John Corcoran

    I suspect your beloved Chartered Surveyors are in for some tough times in the years ahead. This register is going to democratise the process of valuations and will undermine their ability to claim ‘expert’ status. It would be great if there was a similar commercial lease register.

    The second development which will undermine the fee income of the Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland (SCSI) is the requirement of all property service providers to be licensed by the Government. I can see a situation where loads of ‘gavel bangers’ will end their annual subscription to the SCSI given that they now have to pay an annual licensing fee to the Government. In any event, if I were going to sell a house it would be more important to me that the agent were Government licensed (and consequently bonded) rather than a paid up member of the SCSI.

  37. I agree with the esteemed former leader of the People’s Republic of China and Brian Lucey that it is a great day for (IMF-enforced) Irish openness, but a pretty poor one for showing off our Irish IT excellence.

  38. @Brian L

    It’s not about Public S vs private S per se. It’s about tendency to respond to ‘reform’ with the minimal possible response,. It just so happens it is currently a significant and obviously influential portion of the public sector in focus.

    They could have given this to talented, imaginative people (within the PS), but they chose to do it grudgingly and didn’t care about the quality. This should be a source of embarrassment, but it will probably be presented as a fantastic achievement.

    All they had to do to check for ridiculous price errors was stick it in excel and us an ‘if’ function to flag them up.

  39. @ Brian Di Palma,

    I meant to write,” WILL the CSO be using the new data to update their index”. Typo on my part.

  40. @ Grumpy
    CSO website is excellent and it’s public sector. Banks were private sector and were crap at everything.
    I think the job is a good start. If they charge a small fee for information requests and the like they could self finance this and improve it

  41. There were consistent and large price drops in the early months of this year in SW Dublin of about ten percent in three months, slowing down a little after that.
    This is just from unscientific observation, from a small sample or estates, but still it seems unreconcilable with figures given elsewhere.
    Today the discrepancy between the Daft & MyHome Dublin figures was highlighted (a drop & a rise, resp.)

  42. A large number of comparable properties in the same estates with wildly differing sale-prices….
    Vendor reticence Vs vendor desperation ?
    People paying as much as they can get loan approval for ?

    I saw two three bed houses I can identify as being of approx equal real value, one sold for 80, the other for 130 k.
    Will the overall effect of this site be most likely to depress the market to the lower sale-figures ?

    It confirms a fairly large number of 80% price-drops in SW Dublin….

  43. @Eureka

    This tribal ‘public sector’ vs ‘private sector’ Pavlovian thing is getting tiresome.

    Criticism of something in the public sector does not imply adulation for everything in the private sector – you don’t have to be on one team or the other.

  44. @ All

    I wonder what a debate about the merits or demerits of the site – as launched by Brian Lucey – has to do with the substantive issues. It seems to be a case of the requirements of analysis superseding the subject matter.

    Like politics, all property markets are local. The average punter is (i) interested in prices locally for houses similar to the one he or she wishes to sell and (ii) ditto with regard to the area to which he or she wishes to move. The first-time buyer is in a somewhat parallel situation.

    The website is a “revolution” in Irish terms as it means an end to the fog in which only estate agents have been able to navigate. It should enable the market to find a floor,an essential step before any return to normal market conditions can happen.

  45. @ DOCM
    Agreed. It is very significant. It potentially changes how property is bought and sold for a very long time to come.
    I congratulate those who put it together (probably under a fair amount of pressure)

  46. Take care with all the gripes lest your new toy be taken away.

    Its a start. Looks like a low cost effort. No outside IT consultants ? If you can download it into a spreadsheet you can play with it to your hearts content. One cheer for the IMF.

  47. Presumably if house prices continue to slide it wouldn’t be too difficult to mash up a portfolio from the index representing AIB’s mortgage portfolio and stress test it……

  48. @ John Corcoran

    Blaming the estate agents for not wanting to know is like blaming a 4 year old for stuffing themselves wiht sweets…they are going to gorge while they can gorge…the higher the price and the longer it lasts the better they do. I don’t like them and don’t trust them but like the fable about the scorpion and the frog I know what they are and expect them to behave accordingly…so it is nonsense to suggest they didn’t want to know…it is more the case they didn’t care…and part of me thinks, why should they, thats no their job.

  49. All I see are TWO main issues emanating from the Property Price Register.

    1) Greater transparency for potential property owners who are looking to buy / move into another location. (But this is a side benefit)

    2) Greater transparency for the Revenue Commissioners, it will make their job easier in putting a valuation on property for the implementation of the annual property tax.

    Cheating the annual property tax payment by under-declaring the value of your house / abode will be a lot harder.

    Ultimately it will lead to more transparency and should in theory lead to more fair property tax valuations.

  50. @V Barrett

    The Society of Chartered Surveyors are the property professionals. If you’re ill you call a doctor, if you have an engineering problem you call an engineer and if you have property issue you call the professionals, the Society of Chartered Surveyors. You do not consider that they will wipe out the entire Irish economy–likewise you do not consider the medical professionals will put the entire population of Ireland to death.

  51. @ JC
    I most certianly do think the medical profession will suck the limit out of the irish economy to the extent permissible. It is hard to argue that they haven’t (including the pharma industry)…so if anything your analogy doesn’t help your case. It comes back to strong governance and appropriate regulation to deal with the fact that professional by and large are primarily concerned self promotion and preservation…

  52. @V Barrett

    The surveyors/auctioneers i.e the property professionals are an SRO i.e. a self regulated organisation which in Ireland means no regulation. These property professionals were responsible for three practices which created the bubble and crash.

    First the valuation error i.e valuing all 5 euro notes as 20 euro
    Second the ruinous commercial property lease law organised by a criminal cartel.
    And third ,ninty five per cent of all property sold in the state is sold by surveyors/auctioneers.
    They controlled where the property advertising money was spent. Almost all of it was spent with the broadsheet media and the Irish Times, the mouthpiece for the property industry and owner of MyHome.ie , got the lion’s share. These property professionals. controlled the Irish Times property propaganda and all the other broadsheet media property propaganda. They had enormous influence in these papers editorial policies.

    This third item was the fatal one–the media faciltating this propaganda. There were other useful idiots like the soft landing economists etc etc.

  53. @JC, VB

    Property ‘Valuers’ have only ever been competent to estimate the price currently realisable for one property against that for another haven’t they? How much business would a valuer have retained if they had consistently ‘undervalued’ properties they were asked to comment on from 2000 to 2006, on the basis they just thought the market generally was too high?

    Auctioneers / estate agents work for the seller to obtain the highest price *

    They have been paid percentage of sale price, which aligns their interests with the seller.

    Their revenue has been proportional to the volume of transactions also. This means they have had an incentive to encourage excitement about property not only as a utility, but as an ‘investment’.

    Media enterprises like newspapers and TV have shared the incentive to encourage this excitement both as a result of advertising revenue and schedule/page filling.

    Banks had aligned interest through mortgage business.

    That is quite a lot of dysfunctionality.

    A generalist investment analyst or asset manager would have been far more likely to provide an unbiased view on the overall context than ‘property valuers’ or ‘auctioneers’, but how many people either sought or were willing to pay for that kind of advice – no matter how big the property deal they were contemplating?

    * including things like making up fictitious bidders.

  54. @Grumpy

    I assume you are describing these property professionsals as ” three card trick merchants.”

  55. Ahem……
    The “value” of an asset like property is determined primarily by how much somebody is willing to pay for it.
    The amount somebody is willing to pay for it is in turn determined by the amount they are lent to buy it and the amount they need to pay for it to compete with other buyers (who have also been lent a lot of money).
    The system works as long as money supply increases constantly through credit creating differential inflation.
    So – the valuers were actually correct in their valuations. If someone bought the house it means they were right.

    The Irish property market is a buoy on the sea of credit. It goes up and down with the tide. If somebody guesses its height at a particular point they’re not wrong even if it later falls. The problem was that this “sea” was flooded with credit pumped into it by banks who now want to suck that same sea dry (eugh salty!)

  56. “A generalist investment analyst or asset manager would have been far more likely to provide an unbiased view on the overall context than ‘property valuers’ or ‘auctioneers’”

    Not sure about that, Grumpy. They might be a marginal improvement on auctioneers but analysts and asset managers tend to like the consensus view much of the time. Index tracking is very popular especially when one is judged against the return earned by the peer group. Contrarians are not so common in real life. Look at the bollocking Morgan Kelly got from that Dub investment wallah on Prime Time in Oct 2008.

    “Do you think Deutsche Bank are wrong”?

  57. No Seafoid, I am 100% correct that such a chap would have been far more likely to give an unbiased view. That is not to say it would have necessarily correct view though – depends on the individual – but asking a “property valuer” was worse than a waste of time.

    In the Irish context of course, the most sensible route would have been to consult an analyst with a foreigh of personal interest, as by the early 2000’s most Irish investment guys has been brainwashed too!

    btw, Wasn’t the guy on Primetime who’d got hold of a Deutsche note an Irish financial journalist?

  58. re- Sporthog
    It looks to me, though, that despite hitherto acknowledged price-drops, the reality is even worse, and an even lower ‘floor’ is likely to follow where roughly equivalent properties have been sold at widely divergent prices.
    What will happen to the percentage-rate of property tax that they’ve leaked already ? A straightforward mark-up from the 1.5 or 2% to 5 %, or something similar ?
    Or will they be forced to invent Archetypal Values from some unscathed Platonic economy ? How do you fix a property tax and be pretty sure of the income in this situation, anyway ? We still have 20% drops a year, and the averages belie some real chaos as can be seen in individual cases on that site.

    All pretty hypothetical, anyway; I really can’t see even half of the country being compliant, or being able to comply, with the tax.

  59. @ Mark,

    Hmmmm… indeed I see your point.

    “What will happen to the percentage-rate of property tax that they’ve leaked already ? A straightforward mark-up from the 1.5 or 2% to 5 %, or something similar ?”

    It’s going to go the way of motor taxation. If everybody switches to the small economical 1.2 litre car, the Govt just move the goal posts to make up for the loss.

    If the % is ramped up too much, it could mean property prices might never rise much, because nobody might be able afford to own a more expensive property.

    A bit like large engined cars, which are becoming extinct.

    So it will be the same with property. They will get their pound of flesh, a min of 1/2 Billion / year for starters, ramping up to 1 billion / annum in the not too distant future.

    The sad thing about this recession / depression is that the opportunity for serious reform is slipping by.

    Its all about slashing / burning services and tax increases, as Mr Luke “Ming” Flanagan said recently….”what about fixing the hole in the bucket first”?

  60. Re- Sportshog,

    I’m inclined to think that some kind of upper and lower margins need to be introduced to control property prices, principly for the reason that such a fundamental as a home, like healthcare & education, shouldn’t be a host to the bi-polarity of the market.
    Of course I’ve no idea how this could be achieved, and of course some ‘solutions’ cause worse, unforeseen problems. But, forgetting price controls, I think the principle as an ethical one is sound, and could be a starting point….

    …..All somewhat tangential to the immediate problems.

    I think you’re certainly right about the goal-posts (this, as a warning, was a central pillar of the anti-charges campaign, and will probably return for the anti-property tax one, when it begins).
    But, again, a progressively rising tax can’t happen when incomes are declining.
    Without personalising it too much, everyone I know has taken a 20-25 % cut in income, and not-a-few far more through job losses, 40% cuts in hours and so forth.
    I think this was confirmed as general in the Independent, recently.

  61. @hoganmahew

    I note your comments about clerical errors perpetrated by solicitors. These clerical matters used to be checked by actual experienced clerks in the Revenue Commissioners.

    However, the Revenue Commissioners have, throguh eStamping, outsourced all this clerical work at no cost to themselves, to solicitors and their staff. Whilst this benefits Revenue in terms of staffing it is bad for the tax payer and the economy generally.

    this clerical work, formerly done by experienced specialists, is now carried out by higher costing solicitors and their staff. These people are, and always have been, less accurate than the Revenue clerks. They are also slower at the work and cost more.

    Currently solicitors are are not being rewarded for it where cinveyancing is being carried out at a loss. Accordingly, the temptation is to rush it or take less care. The Revenue Commissioners simply don’t care.

    Like the banks who have come a cropper on some solicitors undertakings, the Revenue calculate that the benefit to them far outweighs any losses they may siffer and certainly outweighs the risk and loss which can befall individual taxpayers and their solicitors who make errors.

    Other elements of eStamping is that the Revenue will no longer adjudicate (i.e., double check) stamping at the solicitors request where the solicitor wants to achieve certainty for his client and to close off risk. Essentially, Revenue want you to overpay to be on the safe side.

  62. @Zhou

    It is interesting that errors where a house that is worth about say, 200k goes through at anything from 5k to 125m and nobody notices either the lack of stamp duty paid or a stamp duty calculation that is more than the house is worth!

    Presumably these order of magnitude errors are not all SD exempt transactions?

    Btw, did you notice a commenter on NWL claiming current round of tenders for government business for barristers still not including price as a factor?

  63. @zhou
    “this clerical work, formerly done by experienced specialists, is now carried out by higher costing solicitors and their staff. These people are, and always have been, less accurate than the Revenue clerks. They are also slower at the work and cost more.

    Currently solicitors are are not being rewarded for it where cinveyancing is being carried out at a loss. Accordingly, the temptation is to rush it or take less care. The Revenue Commissioners simply don’t care.”

    Erm, so the solicitors are both more expensive and not being rewarded?

    If the previous experienced Revenue clerks were so good at their job, how come the data prior to e-stamping is unusable in electronic format?

  64. @grumpy

    I lost 2 replies already so I’ll keep it brief.

    Solicitors should notice any overpayment of stamp duty as it comes out of their client account. Allowing a client account to go into deficit is a serious regulatory breach. It is something a solicitors book-keeper should be monitoring constantly, and it would certainly show up in an audit. (With that said, Revenue’s self-serving system for authorising payment in eStamping does not allow for the two signatories control of payments that would have applied when stamp duty was payable by cheque. Still, errors should be picked up quickly.)

    This suggests that bigger errors arise because Revenue are giving dodgy data to the PSRA, or because PRSA/Revenue are not properly recording where the price was for a share only in a property and/or where the price paid was for more than one property.

    In relation to VAT, owever, the price register should note the VAT inclusive price. One would expect the PSRA to gross up the purchase figure where it is apparent VAT was paid. It may well be that the PSRA have done this in a number of cases where it was apparent that VAT was chargeable but not in others.

    There is also the possibility that Revenue are providing incomplete inconsistent data to the PSRA. This could be a fault with whatever sytem they have used for removing private data from the records. One wonders if this simple task got the attention it deserved from the Revenue staff who have the required technological know-how. I suspect Revenue might be somewhat overstretched in that department. I note that they rely on outside contractors and purchased software in relation to cerain IT projects.

  65. @grumpy

    re Barristers – perhaps the the govt didn’t want to mention guineas or the awarding of titles from the Queen as part of the consideration. Who can figure out a profession that includes bladder control and obsequious deference as part of its professional training. 🙂

  66. @hoganmahew

    I expect solicitors to be able to recoup the full cost of conveyancing when the market weeds out the under-cutters and the incompetent coupled with the return of a normal volume of conveyancing.

    I am not omniscient so I cannot say why older data is also inaccurate. I suspect that it is because the data was transcribed directly from PD forms rather than being extracted from computerised systems. I doubt that the clerks who did the original work carried out this transcription. that is my best guess.

    Are you a little bit angry with me?

  67. @zhou
    Nope, just short of time 🙁 🙂

    I do think that solicitors (and their representative bodies) need to up their game considerably. To the benefit not only of punters, but of the many good solicitors out there.

  68. This is the most DESPICABLE sh1teheap of data that I have EVER come across since the ESB threw out its System 34 Mainframe in 1986. 🙂

    So I am Crowdsourcing a fully mappable cleanup. Drop in any time and edit an address ( or 50) and test the result in Googel Maps on the right.

    If any of ye are academics get yeer students to do a Lab on Google Spreadsheets today, tomorrow and EVERY day until the thing is clean…and it works.

    https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0ArdywImnxrDPdHVnblJKd1o5QktWY19SUEh5a1JFamc#gid=0

  69. @ Zhou. Evidently the ability to spell accurately is no longer a prerequisite for working in the legal profession. 🙁

  70. @2pack

    I dunno. It is not clear to me who is responsible for input of data which PSRA is publishing. There is certainly no transparency in relation to Revenue’s internal workings/processes.

    As for my own typos, you will of course be aware of my long running dirty protest against edit function deprivation.

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