Sunday 15 September 2019

Donegal: Viewers still holding out for bargains despite growth in confidence

Average price: €77,500
Areas: Letterkenny, Bundoran, Donegal Town
Up: + 3%
One Year Forecast: + 5%
Assessing Agent: Property Partners Paul Reynolds, Cormac Meehan

Cormac Meehan, who is based in Bundoran, reports that the majority of transactions in his market are for houses that will be used as holiday homes, whether or not they are designated as such.

The county's most common property type however is now the three bed semi.

Ramelton Road, Letterkenny
Ramelton Road, Letterkenny

"It has been a year of consolidation in terms of activity," he says.

"Certainly the volume of sales has increased, and there is more activity across the board, but we have seen no real increase in prices.

Donegal
House Types201420152016
3-bed semi in town, €75,000 €77,500 €81,500
4-bed semi in town, €110,000 €115,000 €120,500
4-bed detached, €125,000 €132,500 €139,000
5-bed detached, €165,000 €175,000 €184,000
3-bed bungalow in town, €110,000 €110,000 €115,500
3-bed bungalow outside town, €160,000 €170,000 €178,500
"Detached 2,000+ sq ft", €250,000 €295,000 €310,000
Holiday home, no market €170,000 €112,500
1-bed apartment, €25,000 €25,000 €26,500
2-bed apartment, €35,000 €40,000 €42,000
3-bed terrace, €65,000 €65,000 €68,500
2-bed cottage, €50,000 €47,500 €50,000

"The market is starting to recover, and there is a little bit of confidence out there. Our viewings are way up, and there is a bit of stability in country areas, both of which are heartening.

"However, the consumer is still of the mindset that there will be more distressed property coming on the market in the year ahead, and is holding out for a bargain."

Anywhere along the coast from Mullaghmore to Rossnowlagh is highly sought after, the closer to the water the better.
Anywhere along the coast from Mullaghmore to Rossnowlagh is highly sought after, the closer to the water the better.

With the increase in the value of sterling, Meehan notes that the purchasing power of those resident in Northern Ireland is more apparent, although there is no real impact on prices.

"It used to be that the key words that I put on to our website that generated the most hits would be words and phrases such as 'surfing capital of Ireland' or 'near an excellent golf course'.

"These days it's all about price, and we have analysed that the key number is €150,000. Buyers search for properties under that magic figure.

"You can have the best of properties priced at €300,000 and €350,000 and they get very few hits.

"The vendors of the better properties have stayed out of it, because they're not convinced that they'll get a decent price."

In Letterkenny, Joe Reynolds of Property Partners Paul Reynolds, says that last year started quiet and got busier as the year went on. He believes that the market has finally reached the bottom.

"There is very little new building," he says, "and the stock is just not out there. That means that prices will have to go up. It won't be as fast or as much as in Dublin, but I reckon that in Letterkenny prices will rise by about 10pc over the next year."

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