Ratings agency Standard and Poor’s has said the Irish property market should see the strongest price rises in Europe this year.

It has predicted growth of 9% on the back of an improving economy and short supply of housing. 

S&P says stronger lending controls by the Central Bank should prevent house prices from spiralling out of control and means prices will rise at a slower rate than they did in 2014.

It predicts house price rises of 9% in 2015 and 5% in 2016, compared to growth of around 16% last year.