Imbalances Versus Fundamentals -- An Econometric Analysis of House Prices in Ireland

32 Pages Posted: 10 Jul 2014

See all articles by Sven Langedijk

Sven Langedijk

European Union - European Commission; Joint Research Center of the European Commission

Balint Tatar


Date Written: July 8, 2014


In the past two decades the Irish real estate market experienced the most pronounced housing boom-bust cycle among all OECD countries. In this paper, we propose a model for residential real estate prices in Ireland distinguishing the effect of fundamental drivers and imbalances. We use a cointegration framework with yearly data from 1975 to 2013. The framework adds to existing literature by capturing the impact of mortgage lending through a proxy variable which overcomes a number of shortcomings in recent studies. We find that increasing disposable income and demographic factors have been the main fundamental drivers of house prices during the boom, while lower mortgage interest rates and increased mortgage lending also contributed significantly to skyrocketing real estate prices. During the bust, the sharp decline in mortgage lending was the single most important factor in the house price collapse, exceeding the effects of falling disposable income and reduced population growth due to the reversal of migration flows. Based on econometric estimations we found that during the bust, real estate prices undershot the ‘equilibrium’ price level significantly.

Keywords: House Prices, Fundamentals, Mortgage Lending, Cointegration

JEL Classification: R3, R31, G21

Suggested Citation

Langedijk, Sven and Tatar, Balint, Imbalances Versus Fundamentals -- An Econometric Analysis of House Prices in Ireland (July 8, 2014). Available at SSRN: or

Sven Langedijk (Contact Author)

European Union - European Commission ( email )

Rue de la Loi 200
Brussels, B-1049

Joint Research Center of the European Commission ( email )

Via E. Fermi 2749

Balint Tatar

Independent ( email )

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