A county where you can enjoy the great outdoors
Published 13/05/2011 | 05:00
For young families who enjoy swimming, boating and fishing, Co Louth appears to be the ideal county to trade up in, especially now that houses have become more affordable and also as stamp duty has been slashed to only 1pc.
The county's sandy beaches and fishing villages offer lots of affordable leisure outlets, while its links golf courses are a must for golfers who enjoy this unique sporting experience. Indeed the County Louth Golf Club at Baltray near Drogheda has hosted one of Ireland's most prestigious sporting events, the Irish Open. In all there are three golf courses close to Drogheda and a further three are located near Dundalk.
One of the reasons for the affordability of homes in the county is due to the willingness of the county's vendors to bite the bullet more quickly than vendors in any other county in Leinster.
Average asking prices for homes have fallen by 47.3pc from their peak in Louth, which is the sharpest fall in any part of Leinster except for Dublin City centre, where they have fallen by 52pc.
It's also a sign that the market may be close to the bottom now that four-bedroom houses, at €262,000 in Co Louth, are fifth-highest of the 12 Leinster counties, including Dublin.
Based on a survey of asking prices provided by Daft, the average house price in Louth fell by 3.3pc in the first quarter of this year, bringing the average house price down to €188,810 in Ireland's smallest county.
Even cheaper are the three- bedroom houses, which are priced at around €159,000, but they are still the 12th-dearest of the 26 counties and five cities surveyed.
At the upper end of the market, five-bedroom houses are asking an average of €353,000.
For those looking for property bargains, Louth apartments appear to be among the cheapest in the country, with two bedroom units averaging €113,000. Louth's one-bedroom flats average €82,000.
Having cut their prices so quickly, Co Louth vendors appear to be among the first to face the reality of the market.
They are also strategically positioned to benefit from the peace process, which means that residents can enjoy the best of both worlds when it comes to leisure, shopping or business activities.
Sports fans can follow Leinster to Dublin or Belfast when they play in the interprovincial rugby matches, or they can enjoy ice hockey at the Odyssey Arena in Belfast or national games at the Aviva. Alternatively they can enjoy horse racing in Dundalk or top-flight league of Ireland soccer in Drogheda and Dundalk.