Cavan: Virginia the crown jewel of Cavan's property recovery
Demand from commuters to Dublin has pushed up property prices in Virginia, Co Cavan, with the town leading a price recovery in a county that shed 70pc of its value during the crash.
Prices in Virginia, which is about an hour's drive from Dublin airport on the M3 motorway, are as much as 15pc higher than Cavan town itself because of its proximity to the capital, says local agent Declan Woods from Sherry FitzGerald Declan Woods. The further west buyers go in Cavan, such as Killeshandra, the lower the prices.
"Virginia would head and shoulders be the most perceived as a commutable base for Dublin," Woods said. "Cavan town is the next-strongest performer."
Across the county as a whole, the price of an average four-bed detached property has risen 10pc to €215,000 and will likely climb 9pc to €235,000 this year. Two-bed apartments have climbed 6pc to €85,000, having fallen to as low as €23,000 in 2014.
Demand for detached properties in the country with at least 2,200 sq ft is high because people who bought apartments and three- and four-bed semi-detached homes during the boom, and found themselves with two properties when they got married or found a partner, are now selling those homes in favour of one large family property. Detached properties with at least 2,000 sq ft of space are few and far between, so prices for those are set to rise 9pc to €300,000 this year.
Mr Woods indicates that in the three-bed terraced and semi-detached market, many buyers are of Eastern European or Indian origin - working in the health sector and purchasing homes at the more affordable end of the market. Three-bed terraced homes in some developments can cost as little as €80,000, though the county's average price is €115,000.
Despite perceptions, there is still a lack of supply in Co Cavan towns as there haven't been any entirely new developments built in almost a decade. "Our market is broken, in that it is cheaper to buy an existing home than it is to build one," Woods says.
"The only building going on is on older sites that are being finished out. The area that developers would consider building first is Virginia, but planning is being turned down there because of a lack of infra- structure services."