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Friday 23 June 2017

Call for investor incentives as rental stock slips

Country Matters: Ballisodare Village

The beautiful Ballisodare Falls lie hidden behind the derelict Mill apartment block
The beautiful Ballisodare Falls lie hidden behind the derelict Mill apartment block

No one knows the property scene in Ballisodare better than local Auctioneer and Undertaker Gerard Clarke.

He believes the recent sale of the Avena Mills apartment development (behind Supervalu) to Ravensilver Limited, (owned by Luke Jnr and Barry Comer, sons of Glenamaddy property baron Luke Comer) is a good thing.

"There are some apartments vacant here behind us but they've been sold recently so we hope there'll be some action," he said.

The County Council and community of Ballisodare however remain in the dark as to the new owner's intentions with the development.

At a County Council meeting on March 6th Director of Services Ms Dorothy Clarke told Councillor Thomas Healy said she had written to Ravensilver a number of times, ( last letter dated 22nd February) seeking their proposals for completing the development but had not received a reply to date.

"That Mill building is also very sensitive. Personally I don't think an apartment block was ever suited for there," he said.

"What'll become of it? I don't know. A big apartment block like that shouldn't be built in a small village. It's an eyesore there," he said. The village can boast fibre broadband for the past few years and the attractions of the Avena Leisure Centre and Supervalu are "a big selling point," says Gerard.

There hasn't been a lot of new builds in the area however.

"The one thing that is scarce is a lot of detached houses, there'd be interest in the likes of that," he said.

What he sees now is investors getting out of the property game and selling to owner-occupiers, thus reducing the number of homes available on the market for tenants.

Gerard believes some sort of incentive should be brought in to keep investors in the market.

"People are getting sick of all the taxes and bills that go with owning property. Incentives are needed because if they go out of the market the rental stock goes down. There's always rental demand out here, within five miles of a big town like Sligo. I would see that as important to bring in something for investors," he said.

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