Another record for house and apartment completions was set in 2005, with almost 81,000 built around the country.

This represents an increase of 5.2% on the previous year and the eleventh consecutive year of record growth.

There were no official figures released today on the number of social and affordable houses completed last year.

However, the Minister for Housing and Urban Renewal, Noel Ahern, estimated that around 7,000 were built.