The price of the average second-hand three-bed semi in county Meath has risen by 4% to €293,750 in the last three months, according to a national survey by Real Estate Alliance.

And the survey has shown that 67% of sales in the county are to first-time buyers, with 35% of all purchasers coming from outside the area.

Across the county, the average time taken to sell is four weeks, the Q1 REA Average House Price Index has shown.

Prices in Ashbourne rose by €30,000 to €375,000, an increase of 8.7%, with 57% of sales to first-time buyers and 43% of buyers from outside the county.

“The year started on a positive note with a flurry of new properties to market, but slowly, yet again, we see a lack of stock and the pent-up demand continues to drive values upwards,” said Paul Grimes of REA Grimes, Ashbourne.

Prices in Trim remained unchanged this quarter at €285,000, with 80% of sales to first-time buyers and buyers from outside the county accounting for 20% of total sales.

“The market seems to have slowed down and there is still low supply of stock, but there are currently not as many buyers looking as we have seen over the past year,” said Thomas Potterton of REA TE Potterton, Trim.

Navan prices rose by €5,000 to €275,000, representing an increase of 1.9%. First-time buyers represented 80% of sales in the area, with 25% of buyers coming from outside the county.

The market in Kells saw a 4.4% increase to €240,000, with 50% of sales to first-time buyers, and purchasers from outside the county also sitting at 50% of total sales.

“We are seeing an Increasing issue with supply and demand: with no new homes in Kells the demand for second hand properties is very high,” said Cara Gavigan of REA T&J Gavigan, Kells.

The REA Average House Price Survey concentrates on the actual sale price of Ireland's typical stock home, the three-bed semi, giving an accurate picture of the second-hand property market in towns and cities countrywide.

Nationally, house prices are increasing at an average of almost €100 a day as the market shows no signs of slowing up in the early months of 2022, the survey has found.

Average house prices rose by 3.16% nationally in the first three months of year, matching the 1% a month increases experienced during the Celtic Tiger days.

And illustrating the two-tier nature of the market, 59% of all purchasers were first-time buyers, that figure rising to 76% in Dublin as people with mortgage approval scramble to get on the housing ladder.

The price of a three-bedroomed semi-detached house across the country rose by almost €9,000 over the past three months to €278,500 – representing an annual increase of over 14%.

The average three bed in Dublin is fast approaching the €500,000 mark, with actual selling prices rising by 2.2% since the new year, to an average of €481,250.

Commuter counties saw prices increase 4.47% – a jump of €13,000 to €305,000 – and double the rate of increase seen in the capital.

In the rest of the country, where prices rose 3.4% to €196,569, the survey found that one in every three buyers were from outside the county as new working conditions enable a rethink on home bases.