Saturday 21 October 2017

Reality bites as Merlin works its magic for a second auction

DONAL BUCKLEY

Their first auction received very mixed reviews among both TV critics and property professionals to such an extent that some wondered if they would ever have a second property auction. Now the Merlin team have confounded the critics and set the date -- May 22.

Not alone that, but Merlin team Ed and Dave Byrne are also exploring the possibility of a follow up TV programme after the audience reponse to their one with the TV series Reality Bites.

The plain speaking,, fun loving duo have even doubled the numbers of properties in their May catalogue.

Last year they had 10 properties in the catalogue but only four of them sold under the hammer. On May 22 they will have 20 properties at the event in the Radisson BLU Hotel, in Dublin city centre.

These will include residential, commercial and investment properties in Dublin, Cork, Laois, Kildare, Galway, Cavan, Mayo, Meath and Wexford.

Managing director Dave Byrne says many of them are mortgage free and being sold on behalf of private individuals and executor's sales.

Merlin has also moved to strengthen the property expertise of its team for this month's auction and enlisted the support of estate agents Murphy Mullan

David Byrne, explains the link up: "We both provide complimenting services. Our auction platform and their expert valuation and estate agency services combined with both parties extensive industry knowledge will ultimately benefit both the vendor and the buyer."

He also says that the collaboration has resulted in an increase in the number of auction properties from 10 to 20, which include properties ranging from one and two bedroom apartments to a freehold six bedroom detached house with full planning for two three-bedroom detached bungalows.

Three of the 20 properties are in Dublin and one of these is a six-bedroom semi-detached house at 45 Barry Park, Finglas, Dublin 11.

With its corner site and planning permission for two more detached houses, the AMV has been pitched at €220,000.

The other two Dublin properties are The Monkstown Snooker Hall in Monkstown Farm near Dun Laoghaire as well as Unit 73 in Cookstown Industrial estate Dublin 24 each of which have €250,000 AMVs. The snooker hall was valued in 2008 at €1.25m so the latest guide price represents a 75pc decrease in price.

The majority of the properties are in Leinster including a three-bedroom semi in Hopkins Haven, Monasterevin, Co Kildare which has an €80,000 AMV.

Mr Byrne says houses of a similar size in Co Kildare sold at auction in July of 2011 for €144,000 and more recently in November 2011 another made €137,000.

Also in south Kildare the former The Three Counties Pub and an adjoining pretty house at Maganey, Athy, is for sale with an AMV of €190,000. In 2007 the 0.9 acre property with its gardens and car park was valued at over €1m.

One the of the cheapest houses is 1 Cois Abhainn, Ballyconnell, Co Cavan which is guiding at €20,000 and is being offered fully furnished. With similar homes generating rents of €300 per month, this price would generate a return of 15pc a year for an investor after purchasing expenses.

The catalogue also includes three holiday homes in Clifden Glen, Connemara, Co Galway which include one- and-three-bedroom cottages ranging in price from €50,000 to €64,000. In 2008, a three-bedroom property in Clifden sold for €265,000.

One TV critic said after last year's auction: "The Merlin car auctions are apparently noted for their laddish, knockabout sales pitch -- Top Gear meets top dollar -- but selling houses is a different business to selling used Toyotas."

But that was last year when a number of other auctioneering firms had even less successful auctions with more properties in their catalogues.

This month sees auction frenzy get into full swing with more than 170 properties set to go under the hammer at a number of auctions in Dublin and around the country. Already on Tuesday and Wednesday this week 16 properties were sold at seven auctions grossing more than €3.5m and that was before yesterday's Allsopsace auctions with 106 in the catalogue.

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