New York – New Market

Almost one in six overseas enquiries about Irish property are now coming from the United States, a national estate agents survey has found.

US property buyers are flocking to secure homes and investment properties in Ireland, buoyed by a strong dollar and the lure of a resurgent economy for emigrants, the Real Estate Alliance nationwide survey has found.

A survey of REA members shows that enquiries from the US increased from almost zero to 16% in 2015.

And this could signal the first major return of emigrants who feel that the time is right to move back to Ireland.

“While there has always been interest from the US market, this has increased markedly in a year that saw a 22% increase in overseas enquiries about Irish property,” said REA Chairman Michael O’Connor.

“Overall, calls from overseas buyers represented 19% of all enquiries received by REA agents in 2015 and 16% of total sales.

“49% of our enquiries came from the UK, 8% from continental Europe, 10% from Australia, but the real surge in new interest came from the US.

“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 €188,370, so there is obvious value for American buyers in Ireland.”

And Real Estate Alliance are offering Irish property vendors the chance to cash in on this mini-boom by registering for the Alliance’s upcoming New York Property Exhibition – the first of its kind to be held in the US.

REA are bringing thousands of properties to New York, giving a host of US buyers the chance to browse in comfort and talk to the experts on the ground.

The exhibition takes place in the Fitzpatrick Hotel at Grand Central, Manhattan from 5-7pm on March 3.

According to REA agents, 31% of overseas buyers are moving to Ireland to live and work, while 29% are purchasing a home for their retirement and 20% are purchasing as an investment.

32% of all overseas purchases in 2015 were completed for less than €100,000 and a further 20% of sales fell in the €100,000-€150,000 bracket, while 31% were properties sold for over €200,000.

The majority of buyers (41%) are aged between 40-50 and 28% are aged 30-40.

“US buyer interest is particularly strong in many undervalued rural counties and scenic locations and for the first time in the bigger cities, mostly from emigrants who feel that the time is right to return,” said REA’s Michael O’Connor.

“This presents many vendors with the opportunity of achieving better prices due to interest outside of the normal marketplace.”

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.

Further details on the REA New York Property Exhibition, and a list of local agents, can be found on www.realestatealliance.ie/NewYork or send an email to register for the event at info@osheaotoole.com

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