Killarney: Why there's no such thing as a bad area in this town...
Killarney has always behaved as a market apart. With its heated tourist economy and extraordinarily restrictive planning regime, it has been experiencing some of the biggest price increases in the country.
Property prices are up by an average of 20pc, with apartments taking a huge jump of about 35pc. A one-bed apartment in Killarney would have set you back €60,000 last year, but the average one-bed is now priced at €80,000. Last year a two-bed would have cost €105,000 and is now guiding at €145,000. This comes on top of a 10pc increase in prices the previous year.
Michael Coghlan of Sherry FitzGerald Coghlan says that in the past 12 months the market in Killarney and its hinterland has seen a massive recovery. "It's mostly a local market, which is very strong at the moment," he says. "But you also have retirees from overseas and elsewhere who are competing with the locals."
UK buyers are still looking at Killarney as a retirement option, even after the Brexit vote. "A lot of people from the UK are buying properties that are priced at about €160,000-€180,000, which is still very good value if you've just sold your home in the UK for STG£450,000. The house they buy here is much bigger and they've made a decision to spend the rest of their days in Killarney so they don't worry too much about the loss on the exchange," says Coghlan.
The rental market, however, is in turmoil. Coghlan says that rents have gone up by about 15-20pc in the past year alone because of the lack of rental properties. Traditional rentals are now being snapped up by first-time buyers, which creates a huge gap in the rental market.
Coghlan claims there is no such thing as a bad area in Killarney. The most sought-after areas are around Muckross and Aghadoe.
Prices will need to increase further so some building can take place in the area, and Coghlan believes it will continue to rise, but at a steadier pace. He predicts rises at different rates for different types of properties - 9pc on average - with five-bed detached houses only going up by another 3pc, while ex-Corporation houses will see a much bigger jump of about 16pc.