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Cork City South Suburbs: Buyers duke it out for trophy homes in south suburbs

Published 23/01/2016 | 02:30

3 Eyrecourt, Rochestown, Co Cork. Sold for €1,230,000.
3 Eyrecourt, Rochestown, Co Cork. Sold for €1,230,000.

Supply was the issue which drove prices up 8pc in Cork City South through the last 12 months in part thanks to an "absolute lack of new homes activity" and buyers in the second hand market have been expressing frustration at the lack of choice available.

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There was little progress on sites through the last 12 months which were expected to become active in Cork City South about now in order to relieve pressure on demand for housing. Agents had expected these to be providing homes at sites like Nemo Rangers, and Cleeve Hill although the latter has just gone into planning.

In Cork City's definitively upper middle class suburbs the average semi hiked by €20,000 in value through the last 12 months while top end trophy homes broke out over the €2m value mark for the first time since the crash.

Top end homes are particularly hard fought over, most of all in Blackrock. This is thanks to a combination of factors which include a general lift in the economic fortunes of local businessmen and women and a marked increase on those returning to Cork City from abroad bearing the cash fruits of homes sold in the UK and USA at strong sterling and dollar conversion rates.

On top of this, we can throw in senior executives experiencing job relocation from Dublin for new corporate roles among Leeside multinationals. The last year has also seen a new seriousness and doggedness to bid among buyers who were viewing "half heartedly", says Savills agent Michael O'Donovan.

Rents surged in this location - a semi which might have achieved €950pm a year ago is now letting for €1,250.

Prices for two-bedroom apartments increased above average, in the realm of 9pc, as an increased number of senior owners trading down became involved in the market to add to the competition and in the absence of more being built, are likely to add another €10,000 to value as the year progresses.

Another notable factor to occur here recently is the return of the loan wielding buyer. O'Donovan says cash buyers have dwindled to around three out of ten sales in Cork City South having accounted for around half of all sales the previous year with somewhat more credit now available.

So even despite the impact of the regulations, 2016's price rises will come close to matching those experienced in the past year with increases of 7pc predicted for 2016.

Irish Independent

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