Clonakilty Property Market Review 2019 & Outlook

 

Clonakilty is increasingly viewed as a super area to relocate to. This is no surprise given the strength of amenities on offer such as the excellent schools, shops, restaurants and hotels, not to mention the choice of beaches, sporting facilities, clubs and interest groups on our doorstep.  Factor in the low crime rate, good employment opportunities and commuting proximity to Cork city and it is no surprise that we have a buoyant property market. 

During this past year, there were 101 residential property sales recorded in the Clonakilty region, which was up from 99 sales in 2018 and 81 in 2017.  This bucked the national trend as sales transaction numbers were down 11% in 2019 according to MyHome.ie.

2019 saw moderate price increases for lower priced properties, zero inflation for properties in the middle ranges and evidence of slight price reduction for higher value properties or for property needing work. 

According to the C.S.O. the average price paid for a dwelling in the greater Clonakilty area averaged €226,000 which is up E1000 on last year. By comparison the average transaction in Skibbereen was E190,000, Macroom E190,000, Bandon E215,000 and Kinsale E340,000. 

2019 will be remembered for relentless Brexit uncertainty and weaker sterling hence only 16% of our own Clonakilty house sales went to investors and holiday home purchasers, down dramatically from 36% in 2018.   

In an increasing trend, 17% of our buyers were trading down, or “rightsizing” to a smaller dwelling.  This buyer was typically selling an older, larger property and then buying a smaller, warmer and more conveniently located town house. 

First time buyers accounted for 41% of our sales, up from 36% in 2018.  Many of these buyers were tired of paying large rents or were living with their parents before their purchase, whilst 11% of purchasers were trading up to a more expensive property. 

Where property is realistically priced to reflect market conditions there is generally no issue getting these to sale agreed.  Even a slightly overpriced property however is struggling to get viewings.  For properties that have sold, the average time on the market is just over 3 months and the average time between going sale agreed to closing is 3-4 months.  

According to Daft.ie, the current national inventory of property for sale is 5% down on the previous year.  In Clonakilty this is closer to 10% down on available levels last year with just 29 properties currently advertised for sale within a 10-minute drive to Clonakilty, of which only 12 of those are within walking distance of town centre.  This is too little and represents less than 2% of the total stock of housing with the Clonakilty region, estimated at just over 2100 properties, according to the current Clonakilty Local Area Plan. 

In further positive news for the area is that there are 5 new residential developments underway in Clonakilty.

Two of these are social housing estates with 52 houses about to commence at Western Road and 57 houses underway at Beechgrove off Fernhill Road, with completion of both expected by end of 2021.

In private new developments, construction work continues at the 13 house Cul Ard, Gullane estate which will be joined by the 80-house development at The Miles and the beautifully situated An Sruthan Beag, a 99-house development at Clogheen where construction is well underway.

In all we should see an extra 200 Clonakilty houses close to, or complete within 2 years from now, which will be a huge economic boost for the area. 

In other Clonakilty property news, the most expensive home sold in the area during last year was the substantial 6-acre residence, “Hawthorns”, off the Ring road at E850,000. 

In the local rental market, there is further tightening of availability, and rental prices are up 9% on last year.  Recently rented 3 bed houses average €930 per calendar month with recently rented 4-bedroom houses making on average €1010.

Even though there is a huge shortage of rental property, a whopping 9% of all houses are vacant in the area, according to the CSO. 

Looking ahead to 2020 we predict moderate price increases for Clonakilty houses, new or in good condition, within the first time buyer price range, within walking distance of the town.
Due to the shortage of builders and increasing costs of materials coupled with talks about tougher government led environmental measures, we see older stock property and properties needing substantial works stagnating in value. 
Higher value properties are already taking longer to sell therefore we will see price drops resulting in the next statistics showing decrease in values at the higher price levels. 

Clonakilty is a great choice for the property investor considering the many recent positive news stories including the aforementioned 5 new residential developments, the opening of Clonakilty Distillery Visitor centre, the new Primary Care Centre, Clonakilty Food Company’s new HQ, the opening of the UK retailer Sea Salt on Pearse Street, 50 new jobs at Clonakilty based Global Shares, the new Palliative Care unit in Clonakilty Hospital, the opening of the Joe Walsh Greenway and this summer’s conclusion of the €10m Clonakilty Flood Relief Scheme. 

Martin Kelleher MPAV (REV) MCEI is a Clonakilty based Auctioneer & Recognised European Valuer.  0238859111 www.martinkelleher.ie