REA members were delighted with the business done at the exhibition in Manhattan's Fitzpatrick Hotel, with 90 customers planning to set up arrangements with REA agents to talk further over the next two months and 25 inspections trips already planned for specific properties.
32% of the attendees were Irish families looking to return home, 19% were retirees looking to downsize, and 17% were young Irish people returning to work.
5% of attendees were searching for a holiday home and another 3% were keen to buy a second home with ties to family in Ireland.
A survey of attendees also found that 16% were investors while 8% were US-based people who have homes in Ireland and were looking for them to be either sold or managed.
70% of those questioned at the ground-breaking exhibition aim to buy property in Ireland within the next two years.
“Our agents were really pleased to meet with so many potential buyers and they expect those conversations to very quickly convert into sales,” said REA chairman Michael O’Connor.
“Those present showed interest in a vast spectrum of price ranges as the attendees came from a number of buyer groups.
“Many of those US buyers have already made plans to travel to Ireland to view their potential properties, with a number of Irish-
American buyers due to visit for the centenary celebrations over Easter and the summer break.”
Almost one in six overseas enquiries about Irish property are now coming from the United States, according to a nationwide REA survey.
The established survey of REA members shows that enquiries from the US increased from almost zero to 16% in 2015. And this is signaling the first major return of emigrants who feel that the time is right to move back to Ireland.
“The average house price in the US in November 2015 was $374,900 (€341,656), compared to our Average House Price survey national value of $210,094 (€188,370), so there is obvious value for American buyers in Ireland,” said Michael O’Connor.
“Many young Irish families looking to move home mentioned the cost of education and healthcare in the US as a major factor for returning to Ireland,” said Michael O’Connor.
“As children grow towards college age, parents may be facing costs of approximately $60,000 per year, with even secondary education costing a minimum of $15,000 per annum.
“The investment sector proved stronger than we would have anticipated, with 16% of those attending seeking to purchase a buy-to-let property in Ireland while 8% were US Citizens with properties in Ireland who may have inherited them and require agents to manage the properties or sell them.
“The majority of attendees were interested in buying a house with just 20% aiming to purchase an apartment.
“In the main, our young Irish people looking to return for work are seeking out properties in cities, while couples with children are looking for properties on a nationwide basis, close to their family.”
The exhibition was also attended by 20 US-based realtors with the aim of introducing buyers to Irish agents, while there was also significant media interest in the US.
Real Estate Alliance (REA) is Ireland’s leading property group of Chartered Surveyors with over 55 branches nationwide, comprising many of the country’s longest-established auctioneers and estate agents.
Available for interview:
Michael O’Connor, REA chairman and auctioneer +353 (0) 87 259 7034 firstname.lastname@example.org
Darren Hughes, MediaConsult, email@example.com, 086 293 7037