Fire Sale on Irish Property

The wild untamed Atlantic roars and crashes on a rugged rocky coast dotted with sandy beaches. On a windy day like today the surf is world class. Sometimes the tail end of hurricanes brush by the coast as they run out of power.

Locals often hope for warm sunny evenings…and sometimes they get it. But if it’s hot, sunny, dry weather you are looking for—Ireland’s North West isn’t for you.

This is a place for getting stuck-in. Hike in the mountains that rise from the rocky shore and drink ice cold spring water from your cupped hands. Amble up the 18th at sunset on one of the world’s best undiscovered links golf courses. Hone your surfing or fishing skills.

Or simply hang out over a bowl of thick chowder and savor the character, stories and warmth of the locals. At night pub doors open and the air is filled with the pungent smell of burning turf and friendly chatter over fiddle playing.

It’s a different world. Perfect for a little bolt hole.

Something big is happening in Ireland. There’s a way you could pick-up a two bedroom apartment overlooking this roaring Atlantic and in the middle of a charming town for as little as 42,000 euro ($56,000).

Today there are deals to be done in Ireland. But also…there are extra special deals. There’s only one way to get in on these. And if you want, you can even get in from your armchair.

You see, Ireland experienced a real boom from 1996-2002. High value and high value added exports surged off the back of a highly skilled English speaking workforce, low corporation tax and free access to European market. Just what U.S. multinationals were looking for.

From 2002 Ireland’s economy relied on houses, land and cars that the Irish sold to each other. The economy got completely out of whack. Real estate prices soared. In 2008 everything spectacularly unraveled amid global financial and economic turmoil.

The real estate market went “no bid”. There was no activity.

The tax payer is carrying the can for the mess that is the Irish banks…and the mess that is developers’ loans and failed businesses. They are just sitting on their inventory.

Foreign banks and desperate Irish property owners want out at any price. So, fire sale auctions are taking place—three this year so far, the most recent in September (where that apartment I mentioned above sold for 42,000 euro).

You can bid remotely at these auctions. My full report on this fire sale opportunity in Ireland went out a few weeks ago to Real Estate Trend Alert members and is now posted in the members’ archive under “Irish Castles, Land, and Ocean Views – Is It Time to Deal?” You can access it as soon as you join RETA.

Editor’s Note: Ronan McMahon is Irish and, through his work with Pathfinder (IL’s preferred real estate advertiser), an expert on international real estate.