Report Reuters: Ireland Are Down For The 4th Month In A Row in House prices and the economy Posted October 26, 2006 Oustanding post Green Bear, glad to bump it up. Many of your arguments are supported anecdotally by an EA posting on an Irish forum earlier today: "I am an estate agent in Dublin. I can definitely see a marked change in the market. Properties are just not shifting these days. The phones have stopped ringing. The buyers are now being chased whereas 2 months ago they were just ignored because they were made to do all the chasing. There is a glut of properties on the market and we get more and more listings each day. But still the phones don't ring. Any offers that we get are well below the asking price. This was unheard of in the past. Sellers are being asked to drop their prices and I think this is just the start. I was selling property in Australia when their market topped after ten years of boom. Ridiculous prices but nowhere near as crazy as here." http://www.askaboutmoney.com/showthread.ph...10&page=365 ........... You rightly point out the importance of the construction sector to the overall economy in your post. But I think there is a slightly unexpected anomoly in this. Namely, that if construction tanked, the effects on the country would be disproportionately smaller than construction's current economic importance would suggest (something like 18% of people are employed in construction and related industries). This is primarily because it would lead to loads of immigrants leaving the country (hello 2012 Olympics!). This would soften the unemployment carnage that one might have expected. I think the majority of Irish people within the 18% would still find work or re-train. The immigrants leaving would be a substitute for mass unelployment. And a juicy side effect of all this: Fewer immigrants = fewer renters. Snowball time. Immigrants leave, FTBs sit out, IR's rise etc. etc. So the losers would be the govenement coffers (which are obscenely overflowing anyway), the developers, EA's, late-comers to the BTL party, over-stretched mortgage holders and immigrants. But the effect on the economy as a whole (especially in terms of general unelployment and the ability of a majority of people still to pay their motgages) need not be that catastrophic. Massive HPC + minimum damage to the rest of the economy? Now that would be HPC Heaven.