New research shows a slowdown in the number of households buying properties in Dublin, mainly due to the fact that they are being priced out of the market. 

The number of households buying property slowed by 0.7% last year - the first contraction since 2011.

The research by KBC Bank Ireland found that while there was an increase in activity in Dublin's residential market last year, the increase was largely due to public bodies and institutional buyers buying property.

KBC Bank Ireland explains that the non-household sector is made up of a very diverse group of property buyers with different requirements and priorities and it includes private companies, charitable organisations and state institutions. 

Public sector purchases are focussed on social housing needs, while institutional buyers are mainly interested in developments suited to the private rental sector.

Today's research found the proportion of non-household buyers in Dublin stood at 28% last year, compared to just 6% in 2010. 

KBC Bank Ireland puts this shift down largely to the rising price of property in the capital. 

The research says that since 2012 the price of new homes bought by first-time buyers has almost doubled - from €200,000 to €380,400 - which has unsurprisingly affected the affordability. 

That means that first time buyers would need to have an income of around €100,000 a year in order to be able to afford the average Dublin home under Central Bank lending rules.

Today's research from KBC Bank also shows that the share of first time buyers - as a proportion of household buyers - stood at 37% in 2019, down from 60% in 2010.

The lender noted that the decline happened between 2010 and 2015, when first time buyers made up only 29% of the market. 

It also found that completions growth in Dublin fell by 1.8% in 2019 from 23% in 2018 and 56% in 2017.

South Dublin saw the biggest slowdown in the pace of building.

The pace of increase in median new home prices also slowed. New home prices rose by 3.2% last year, down from the 4.6% growth rate in 2018 and far below the peak of 26% in 2015.

"The slowdown in Dublin house price inflation likely reflects the dampening influence of demand-side factors, namely affordability constraints and some uncertainty regarding the Irish economic outlook," KBC Bank Ireland said.