15% drop in number of homes in negative equity

The number of homes in negative equity has dropped by around 15%.

A report by the ESRI says recent increases in house prices have reduced the number of homes in negative equity, with the greatest drop in Dublin.

Latest official figures reveal the cost of buying a house in Dublin has surged almost 25% over the past year.

At the end of 2012, there was a peak of 314,000 homes worth less than their outstanding mortgage.

Economist with the ESRI David Duffy said: "On the back of what we've seen happen to prices throughout the second half of 2013 and people continuing to repay their mortgages, the number of mortgage-alone homes in negative equity has fallen by about 15%, or by about 45,000 mortgages."

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