Buying property in Dublin
Buying property in Ireland has been a viable alternative for expats who plan to stay for an extended period. Though prices are still high, they’ve decreased tremendously from what they were.
Locals will tell you that this is a great time to buy, but depending on the terms and duration of an expat's contract, they may still prefer to rent property.
Buying property in commuter towns
During the boom, many Dublin workers moved way out into towns in surrounding counties like Navan, Maynooth, or as far as Leitrim. While this often meant travel times of up to two hours each way, the financial savings were considerable.
If you’re looking for somewhere rural, quiet, and with a good sense of community, bargains can be had in these areas. Just be sure to check the estate very carefully as some lack facilities and may be a little worse for wear.
How to buy property in Ireland
The basic steps to buying property in Ireland are similar to those in many other European countries.
- Start the search by browsing the listings of real estate agents, newspapers and online sources
- Find a good solicitor to help you with these stages
- Choose a property and arrange financing
- Be aware that despite making a verbal offer, there's still a chance of being gazumped (essentially being outbid by another buyer who sweeps the property)
- For this reason, it's important to draw up a clear official offer and make the offer as soon as possible – this initial offer is dependent on the contract and survey.
- Once the surveyor has assessed the house, it is usual to amend the offer if hidden problems are found. Damp, for example, is a constant problem thanks to Ireland's climate.
- Finalising the mortgage with a lender involves quite a bit of paperwork which is where a solicitor comes in handy
- At this stage buyers would usually pay the full deposit; usually about 10 percent of the final cost, but this is negotiable
Ultimately, buying property in Dublin is completely dependent on personal choice and situation. Though property prices have decreased, so have rental prices, so for a short contract leasing may still be a better option. Expats would be wise to do thorough research, weigh up their options and ultimately decide if they'll be staying long enough to make the investment of buying a house worthwhile.