Wednesday 28 January 2015

New mortgage rules provide welcome relief for first time buyers

Real Estate Alliance (REA) has welcomed plans by the Central Bank to provide relief to first-time buyers under its new mortgage rules.

The new rules will enable banks to lend up to 90% of the value of the home to first-time buyers up to a limit of €220,000.

This means that first time buyers will need a 10% deposit for the first €220,000 of their property's cost and 20% of whatever is above this limit.

In most other cases banks will only be able to lend up to a maximum of 80% of a property’s value.

“A blanket 80% mortgage cap would have proved excessive towards first time buyers, making it difficult for them to get on the property ladder,” said REA CEO Philip Farrell.

“Based on average house prices, a 20% deposit rule would have required €70,000 upfront from an individual or couple purchasing a property in South Dublin. (According to figures from REA's latest property survey, an avergae three-bed semi in South Dublin is valued at €350,000).

“However, based on the more lenient deposit requirements, that figure comes down to €48,000 for a first time buyer.

“Outside the South Dublin area, buyers will still be entitled to borrow up to 90% of the purchase price of their first home.

“This in turn will assist in preventing further pressure on rental values in large parts of the country which would have ensued if they had proceeded with the initially intended figures.

“Rental values have increased by up to 20% over the last 18 months in particular parts of the country.

“There is absolute merit in what the Central Bank are introducing and it is to be welcomed in assisting in the prevention of a property bubble in the future.

“This has proven successful in particular parts of the world, especially Asia.

“However, it remains somewhat untested in this part of the world.”

Real Estate Alliance (REA) is Ireland’s leading property group of

Chartered Surveyors with over 50 branches nationwide, comprising many of the country’s longest-established auctioneers and estate agents.


Available for interview:

Philip Farrell, CEO Real Estate Alliance

086 250 3515 /

Media information:

Darren Hughes, MediaConsult 086 2937037

Tuesday 27 January 2015

REA O'Connor Murphy Public Auction 26th Feburary at The Strand Hotel, Ennis Road, Limerick.

REA O'Connor Murphy are holding our first Auction of 2015 at The Strand Hotel, Ennis Road, Limerick on Thursday the 26th of February at 12.00.

For further information contact REA O'Connor Murphy on 061 279300 or

More Details

Monday 26 January 2015

New mortgage cap will drive pressure on rental markets - REA

The Central Bank’s proposed new mortgage borrowing cap of 80pc will lead to increased pressure in rental values in the larger urban areas, according to a leading estate agency group.

Philip Farrell, CEO of Real Estate Alliance, believes that measures should be introduced which reflect the reality of Ireland’s ‘three-tier’ property market.

“The big issue here is the variance of property values through three distinctive tiers – Dublin, the commuter counties and large urban areas nationwide such as Galway and Cork, and finally, the rest of the country,” said Mr Farrell.

“These follow different patterns and the price of an average house can range from €60,000 in some counties to €425,000 in particular parts of Dublin and as result of this, people buying in the capital may require a net deposit of €70-80,000.

“The new mortgage borrowing cap will exclude most first-time buyers from purchasing in Tier One, or the greater Dublin area.

“This will, in turn, increase the pressures on rental values, which are back to levels only 10% off their peak of 2007, unlike property values which are still up to 40% off their peak.

“There is absolute merit in what the Central Bank are introducing and it is to be welcomed in assisting in the prevention of a property bubble in the future.

“This has proven successful in particular parts of the world, especially Asia.

“However, it remains somewhat untested in this part of the world.

“Real Estate Alliance would suggest that two alternatives be looked at, if the cap is to be introduced.

“We call for the Central Bank to acknowledge the three tier market by introducing realistic brackets for different house prices, which would assist in removing the geographical inequities which are apparent in the sector. 

“We would also back the introduction of an insurance policy, which the borrower would take out to provide protection on the differential between 10-20% of the deposit if the loan defaults.”

Real Estate Alliance (REA) is Ireland’s leading property group of
Chartered Surveyors with over 50 branches nationwide, comprising many of the country’s longest-established auctioneers and estate agents.


Available for interview:
Philip Farrell, CEO Real Estate Alliance
086 250 3515 /

Media information:
Darren Hughes, MediaConsult 086 2937037

Wednesday 14 January 2015

Real Estate Alliance UK Property Show

Real Estate Alliance has announced they are bringing their properties to the REA Property Exhibition in London on the 21st of March 2015. The exhibition will take place in the Millennium Gloucester Hotel, 4 Harrington Gardens, London. The event will take place from 11am to 2pm. The Group will be presenting a large sample of their properties all across Ireland with many properties under €100,000.
UK Buyers are active in the Irish Property Market. Sterling’s strength is giving them buying power. We are going to the source with our UK Property Show in March 2015.
If you are interested in listing your property with Real Estate Alliance, register your details with REA & we will get a local agent to contact you.

21st of March 2015
11 – 2pm
Millennium Gloucester Hotel & Conference Centre, 4- 18 Harrington Gardens,London, SW7 4LH

Thursday 8 January 2015

C.15.8 acres, Clonroosk, Portlaoise, Co. Laois for sale by public auction 5th February, 2015

REA Sothern are holding an Auction on theat 4pm in The Killeshin Hotel, Portlaoise, Co. Laois on February 5th for c. 15.8 acres, Clonroosk, Portlaoise, Co. Laoise.These lands have extensive road frontage to the southerly bypass and consists of C. 10.85 acres zones residential and remainder unzoned flood plain.

More Details

More info contact REA Sothern on 059 9131218

Wednesday 7 January 2015

Strong 2015 predicted for house market outside Dublin

House prices outside of Dublin are expected to rise by as much as 20pc next year, as the rest of the country begins to catch up with the capital
Dublin prices soared for much of this year, although the market cooled somewhat in recent months. However, 6pc growth is still expected in 2015.
Outside of the capital, where values are much more affordable and therefore less likely to be affected, house prices are expected to continue rising strongly through 2015 - by as much as 20pc.
A survey carried out for the Irish Independent by the Real Estate Alliance (REA) shows that agents in Dublin believe prices will rise by just 6pc next year.
Uncertainty caused by proposed Central Bank restrictions on mortgage deposits has undermined confidence in the Dublin property market.
This month's survey of more than 50 REA member firms shows that the capital's property market has largely stalled in quarter four from September to December
Agents said that it was now taking six weeks to sell the average Dublin home - a rise on the April-to-June figure of four weeks.
Agents in Dublin reported a flat fourth-quarter in many areas, with some buyers simply taking a watching brief due to uncertainty over the proposed Central Bank directive
"It is clear from our agents that the lack of clarity from the Central Bank is having a large impact on confidence. However, even if it is resolved, the supply issue still remains. For a period for five years, the construction sector ground to a halt and we are still feeling the effects of this through the lack of availability of new homes," said REA chief executive Philip Farrell.
But commuter counties and the other major cities are expecting a strong 2015 - with healthy demand and limited supply being major factors, according to REA agents.
Westmeath showed the highest price growth expectation for 2015 at 20pc, followed by Kilkenny, Clare and Galway city all at 15pc. On the other end of the scale Sligo showed the lowest growth expectation at 4pc.
Demand in the three main cities outside Dublin is expected to remain high due to a lack of supply, with prices in Cork expected to rise by 10pc, Limerick by a stronger 12pc and Galway City by 15pc thanks to a shortage of good quality homes for sale in the Western capital
Commuter counties Meath (13pc) and Kildare (11pc) have major towns with re-awakening property markets.
Meath, in particular, is reporting impressive growth in Kells and Trim. However, there are no new developments proposed for either town in 2015, unlike Navan, where prices are predicted to rise by 15pc.
Meanwhile, REA agents in many parts of the country are warning house building will not start until prices rise above cost value. "The demand for new builds is there, but until prices reach a certain level, some builders are reticent to begin developments," said Mr Farrell.
"Overall, we are now seeing a welcome return to a normally functioning market where you are likely to see less volatility and, thankfully, more predictability. As the market started to rebound, some of the high percentage recoveries that we saw in 2014 were quite misleading, due to the limited number of transactions involved, and the low price base that we were coming off."
Finally, the REA survey shows cash buyers reducing significantly, from 70pc of transactions 15 months ago to about 40pc today.
Ireland's three-tier housing market
Despite much being said about Ireland having a two-tier property market, evidence suggests that prices are moving in three blocks:
Dublin city and county became the first Irish market to recover. It was in leafy Dublin 4 that property values first began to inch up early in 2012, with affluent buyers swooping in. The impetus spread rapidly outwards, suburb by suburb.
Driven by shortage, the looming end of tax incentives for investors, and the last hurrah of cash buyers, 2014 saw prices in Dublin increase by 24pc. This was the highest price inflation in the world
It is generally thought that Dublin experienced a fall in values of up to 60pc since the bubble began to burst in late 2006. It has meant that prices had room to inflate.
Latest evidence is that runaway inflation is cooling.
Cities and commuter belt
After Dublin, Cork city was the next market to recover. It went from static prices to a rapid rise at the end of 2013. This was spearheaded by an investor feeding-frenzy at the bottom, with apartments snatched up.
Galway soon saw its prices begin to surge in a similar fashion and Limerick was next. Cork and Galway are now both experiencing similar issues to Dublin.
Meanwhile, the belt of commuter counties around Dublin - where prices had been hit especially hard in the downturn - also began to recover late in 2013. This occurred as first-time buyers started being priced out of Dublin.
The rural counties
These counties - the last to be hit by the property crash and the last to recover - began to see prices rise again in early 2014.
Buyers pounced on what they believed to be the cheapest prices in a generation.
Central Bank lending restrictions will certainly have an impact but, at the same time, it won't be as much of an obstacle to buyers. When a semi-detached house can cost €100,000, a deposit of €20,000 is more achievable

Further Information: 086 8249040

Friday 2 January 2015

5 Steps to buying your home

STEP 1: Get agreement in Principle
  • Know your price range & limit.
STEP 2: Research Properties
  • Check out maps & different locations
  • Know the particular area you want to buy a property.
  • We advise all purchasers to do a checklist of what they expect when buying a home.
  • Ask yourself:
    • House or Apartment? New or Second Hand?
    • Location close to work / family & friends?
    • Importance of Local amenities
    • shops, schools / other facilities
    • Features in a property that are important to you
    • number of bedroom / garden space / heating type /garage etc.

STEP 3: Contact your local REA Agent
  • Register your requirements with local agents.
  • Pop into their office – just because a property isn't listed for sale they may have something coming available that will suit your requirements.
  • Check out Websites: main property websites: / &
  • Drive By the property - It's very important that before you view a property you take a drive by the property know exactly where its located & know the general area ask yourself: Do I see myself living here?
STEP 4: Viewings / Inspections
  • From you research view a number of properties.
  • Never let minor negative defects turn you off viewing a property.
  • Remember a lick of paint & some imagination can make all the difference!!
  • From your viewings determine: YES / No or MAYBE properties.
  • We would always recommend that you revisit the properties with family & friends determine which property is top of your list.
  • Ask as many questions as possible take your time & don't be rushed
STEP 5: Make an Offer
  • The agent will always advise you on a current offer on a property.
  • It's also useful to find out other information prior to making an offer: Find out how long the property is on the market, what’s the vendors expectations, what is included in the sale, is there a management company (cost / house rules etc.) BER rating Etc.
  • Place your offer on the property.
  • Once your offer has been accepted you can contact your lender to move from "Approval in Principle" to "Full Loan Approval".
  • It would be common practice in today's market an agent would obtain a copy of your approval upon paying a booking deposit. ]
  • SALE AGREED & the sale is instructed (onto the legal side of things