Irish Ex-Pats Dominate the Trophy House Market

Spiralling College Costs in the UK and USA are driving successful emigrants back to Ireland

The upper echelon of the Dublin property market is being increasingly dominated by cash-rich Irish executives who, having emigrated in previous years, are now returning to Ireland from abroad.  This is according to property experts at Savills Ireland who say that these ex-pats are primarily coming back from the UK and the USA, with many from Spain, France and Brussels and others from as far away as Asia.
Janet Carroll, Branch Manager, Savills Ireland, “They have typically lived abroad for between 5 and 15 years, for one reason or another choosing to emigrate rather than settle and buy in Ireland during the boom years. Some claim that this is because they could see how ridiculous the prices were, but it could equally have been just luck! These canny buyers are now returning and buying great homes for a fraction of what they were being sold for during the boom.  The main reasons being given for returning back to Ireland are to educate their children here and despite everything for the quality of life they still feel is very good compared to other countries”.
Savills say that within the last 18 months they have sold 3 houses to ex-pats in one Terrace alone in Blackrock, one was returning from London, another from Singapore and another from Spain. Between the relatively low cost of property here and the spiralling cost of 3rd level education in the UK and the USA, there are plenty of reasons for them to return to Ireland.
Janet continued, “Typically theses buyers are looking for large homes in the €800,000-€1.5 million bracket, with a smaller group looking for homes in the €2 million plus bracket.  Interestingly, as a result of this phenomenon, there is actually a shortage of properties in these price brackets”.
The property consultants say that schools and colleges to a large degree determine where the returning Irish choose to locate.  Locations such as Blackrock, Monkstown, Foxrock, Dublin 4 and 6 are scoring very high on what is desirable.  In addition, invariably these buyers have additional funds to refurbish homes to their own taste and style.
Janet concluded, “These buyers are usually senior executives who have done very well while abroad.  As a consequence, they are cash buyers so they are not depending on banks for lending.  Apart from the drop in prices here those returning from the UK are also taking advantage of favourable currency conversion rates”.