By Suzanne Pender
THERE has been an increase in enquiries from house buyers looking to move to Co Carlow with a view to working from home, according to a national survey carried out by Real Estate Alliance.
The price of the average three-bed semi in Carlow was static at €171,000 in the past year and despite fears of a downturn in the market during the Covid-19 crisis, prices across the county have not changed over the past three months.
“One very interesting development is that we have had several enquiries and viewings from people from Dublin without a local connection to see some of our bigger houses with a view to working from home,” said Harry Sothern of REA Sothern, Carlow.
Prices in Carlow town have remained steady at €177,000 over the year, with time to sell rising by one week to 11 weeks during this quarter.
“Viewings have been strong since we reopened our office and we are optimistic that values will hold and that there will be a good level of sales throughout the rest of the summer,” said John Dawson of REA Dawson, Tullow.
Prices in Tullow remained steady at €165,000 over the year, while time to sell rose from eight weeks to nine during this quarter.
The REA average house price survey concentrates on the actual sale price of Ireland’s typical stock home, the three-bed semi, giving an accurate picture of the secondhand property market in towns and cities countrywide.
Across the country, despite fears of a downturn in the market due to lockdown, the price of a three-bed semi-detached house fell by just 0.15% over the past three months to €234,667, an annual decline of 0.56%.
“Although sales slowed during the lockdown, they did happen and, despite fears, very few fell through or had to be renegotiated,” said REA spokesperson Barry McDonald.
“Changes in the world of work are having an immediate effect on the secondhand housing market, with a nationwide trend emerging of buyers looking to move 15 minutes outside of their urban location, where they can get more space for the same money.
“We are finding that people are looking for three things – more space, gardens and a guarantee of better broadband, where transport was previously the highest priority.
“While the current outlook is positive and there seems to be a lot of pent-up demand, it may be Q3 before we see the effect of Covid-19 on the market and on the outcome of mortgage approvals granted before the lockdown,” he said.