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Boomerang buyers boost Mayo property prices


The price of the average three-bed semi in Co Mayo is expected to rise by 6 percent in the next 12 months, according to a survey carried out by Real Estate Alliance. Prices in the county rose by 3.1 percent between September and December to €165,000, with average three-bed semis rising by €5,000, the Q4 REA Average House Price Index shows. The buoyancy has been attributed to the growth of remote working, as the option to work from home incentivised buyers to move away from expensive, congested urban centres.
“Our outlook for 2021 is now greatly improved with the announcement of the release of vaccines. This will give confidence to all potential buyers and economic optimism for the year ahead,” said Robert McGreal of REA McGreal Burke in Castlebar and Westport.
Prices in Castlebar rose 3.1 percent in the fourth quarter (Q4) of 2020 to €165,000, with time taken to sell dropping from nine weeks to six. Westport prices rose 2 percent over the past three months to €245,000, and time taken to sell fell by one week to six.
“Q4 has demonstrated the resilience of the Mayo residential market, with demand continuing to far outstrip supply,” said Mr McGreal.
“Demand continues in all sections of the market where purchasers are trading up to a larger property, and any property with home-office potential is continuing to attract attention.
“We are also seeing a marked rise in purchasers returning home. These ‘boomerang buyers’ are upwardly mobile young people, previously working in cities who are buying in provincial and rural areas now that they can work from home.”
National comparison
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 second-hand property market in towns and cities countrywide.
Average house prices rose by almost 1.5 percent nationally over the past three months in a market fuelled by a combination of record mortgage approvals and an unprecedented lack of supply, the survey found.
The price of a three-bedroomed semi-detached house across the country rose by more than €3,000 over the past three months to €239,194 – an annual increase of 1.9 percent.
The biggest rises in Q4 came in Ireland’s secondary cities and the commuter counties – both of whom had experienced the least movement in prices over the preceding 18 months.
The price of a three-bedroomed semi-detached house in Dublin City rose by 0.6 percent to €431,833 during the past three months, an annual increase of 1.41 percent.
Cork, Limerick, Galway and Waterford cities shared a combined increase of 2.4 percent in the past 12 weeks with prices rising by €6,000 to an average of €262,500.
Commuter counties are now feeling the benefit of the migration towards space and home working potential, with three bed semis rising 2.2 percent by almost €6,000 on the Q3 figure to an average of €253,111.
Reflecting the flight to rural locations, prices in the rest of the country’s towns rose by 1.2 percent in 12 weeks to €165,397.