April 23, 2017
The Sunday Times
If you only have time for one newspaper today, for property news, The Sunday Times is the one to get.
Editor Linda Daly writes about ‘A new generation of unban living – First time buyers, returnees, investors and renters want the many benefits of a city centre apartment’. It’s a perspective on the apartment market in Dublin that we don’t often hear about. In fact, most agents are reporting increases in the proportion of owner-occupiers buying. There are many reasons why this is important and they all come down to the driving force behind community living. We need mixed-tenure and occupants with an interest in the long-term improvement of the area.
This property supplement has a great selection of properties this week. With an asking price of €199,000, visual artist Edain O’Donnell’s contemporary Roscommon home comes to the market with a line-up of unique and appealing features including; vegetable garden, mezzanine art studio and extensive views that take in two separate ring forts. Agent: REA Brady
Also, €600,000 is the asking price for a transformed three-bed house in Phibsborough, No. 18 Geraldine Street tells the story of a one-bed 65sqm house that sold for 225,500 just last October. Since then, the size has almost doubled to 120 sqm and is beautifully presented, but the real opportunity for the investor/developer was the location, close to Phibsborough. It’s certainly a steep price but shortage of ready-to-occupy space in the city means that it will most likely make this.
Knight Frank have the perfect downsizer on offer, No. 3 Hollywood Mews in Goatstown is a two-bedroom house in a great area. Properties like this are difficult to come by so this one is unlikely to remain on the market for long.
Millionaire’s Row features a perfectly positioned, impressively designed home over-looking Galway Bay with views as far as the Aran Islands. Westridge comes to the market through O’Donnellan Joyce asking €1.6m.
Home hunter Eithne Shortall talks about taking the DIY route to finding a home. This is known as sourcing off-market and just a few years ago, up to 30% of transactions were taking place off market. In a rising/recovering market, this figure has dropped significantly but such transactions do happen. [One word of advice for off-market transactions, never pay booking deposits to the seller directly – if there is no estate agent involved, ensure that any deposit required is paid directly to the vendor’s solicitor to be held on trust i.e. not released to the vendor until closing.]
Elsewhere in the main paper
In Latest figures throw doubt on new home completions, Colin Coyle tackles the discrepancy – long argued but now revealed – between the number of new homes claimed and those actually delivered nationwide. This issue was in the news last week following the CSO census report on housing but the figures released by the Local Government Management Agency paints a stark picture of comparison; the numbers completed might be as low as 10% of those completions claimed. This article breaks down the differences on a county by county basis, which will shock local housing market watchers (and might redeem local critics). For example, in County Carlow, official department figures show the number of completions to be 126 for 2016, whereas the Building Control Management System (BCMS), an internal local authority database, show the real figure is actually 2. Similarly, the discrepancy in the figures for Dun Loaghaire/Rathdown is 1,088 to 78 and for Cork is 287 to 21.
Also, UK and Brexit coverage runs across all newspapers but The Sunday Times has, arguably, the most broken down and individual perspectives. Actually, while not property related, Kevin Myers column today makes for an interesting read and sums up the uncertainty of Ireland’s position: New Irish border is one-way uncertainty – Frontier issue exposes our complicated relationship with UK and EU.
The Sunday Business Post
Karl Deeter writes the most aspiring property piece in his column this week: ‘With a little bit of lateral thinking , we could have new city centre homes for €30k‘. In fact, he asks the question, if we can create homes for this price, do we have a responsibility to try to make that happen? Overwhelmingly, I say ‘yes’. So, what needs to happen? Well, to start with, it will take some reimaging of our planning process, and a re-consideration of our current building codes. He states that there is potential space within the canals for up to 4,000 dwellings (for up to 10,000 occupants). But there’s a catch, in his own words, Karl confirms that in order to achieve fast delivery at this price the properties would be less safe, at potential risk of fire spread and would definitely be not as green or eco-friendly as current regulations demand – so what ought we prioritise? It’s a difficult question.
Editor Tina-Marie O’Neill writes about the Power in Passivity. Running a home for €200 per year is just one of the benefits of passive homes but is it enough to justify the building expense? This article features Innovative Home Solutions, founded by Ultan Larkin and explores energy usage in the context of compulsory regulatory standards and international best practice.
Also, Catherine Healy brings together the best of what’s available – mainly in South Dublin – below €1m and there is a commercial property round-up.
The SBP, in association with Enterprise Ireland, has published ‘100 Hot Start-Ups’. Unfortunately, there are no proptech companies featured on the list so that gives us a good target for next year!
The featured, front-page, property is an elegant period house on Leinster Road, brought to the market by Savills, asking €1.95m. This five-bedroom home has been in the same family for 30 years and as Katy McGuinness describes “No. 60 is a lesson in how to live well in a period house, to respect the fabric of the house and not be swayed by passing trends, without turning it into a museum”.
The 4 of a kind feature one-off homes in Connemara – including a five-bed contemporary home on Sky Road in Clifden sitting on two acres with unobstructed Atlantic views.
‘How to get planning permission’ is the topic for Architect’s Clinic by Diarmuid Cronin with an easy breakdown of the process including costs and likely challenges.
In Agent View, Linda Forsyth talks about how the Help-to-Buy scheme is actually increasing stock levels. [I could not disagree more but it’s always interesting to read another perspective.]