Cheap holiday home destinations in Ireland

Posted on December 12, 2014 by Guest Writer
An inviting house stood atop the clifftop in Howth.

Browse the Internet and you will find dozens of websites displaying Irish holiday home listings for owners and renters alike. If you would like to rent out a holiday home, it’s easy to list and get your property advertised online for an international tourist market.

Rental success is of course down to the quality of your property but, as importantly, its location could make all the difference between bookings or no bookings. Holiday homes near popular Irish tourist destinations will of course appeal to more people and therefore increase your chances of getting the rentals you hope for. Buy your holiday home at the right price, in or near a tourist hub and you’ll be on your way to a winning formula.

Wise investors always buy low to get the best returns but in today’s market, patience is key. You will have to sit out the economic downturn to see returns in the future.

So where can we find the best bargains in Ireland today? According to a report in the Independent, the five cheapest places to buy your holiday home in Ireland are:


1. Laois

At just half an hour’s drive from Dublin, Laois, in central Ireland, is the country’s cheapest place to buy, with three bedroom semi-detached homes priced at an average €55,000. A rural area famed more for ploughing championships than for tourism, Laois has yet to achieve a profile as a holiday destination. Meanwhile shrewd investors expect to see prices creep upwards.


2. Roscommon

Roscommon has several tourist attractions to attract visitors to your holiday home. Its pristine rivers, lakes and hills are an impressive backdrop for an abundance of historical and mythological sites, including many Celtic ruins and fortresses, Boyle Abbey and several interesting museums. To add to its allure, paths and parks make the area ideal for walkers and, for the adventurous, Arigna Mines offer underground tours of Ireland’s first coal mine. Festival goers will love the Harp Festival, the Boyle Arts Festival and the Viking Festival.

Over development has struck big here, particularly in towns like Tulsk, Castlerea, Rooskey and Strokestown, where ghost estates are the second highest in the country. As a result, houses in the town of Roscommon sell at about 25 per cent under build costs and in Tulsk, Strokestown or Boyle, they sell for about 50 per cent below construction costs. The average price of a three bedroom semi is approximately €56,000. According to John Earley of Property Partners Earley in Roscommon: “It’s clearly driven by value. They’re getting a chance to buy a house that should be €150,000 for €50,000.”


3. Leitrim

The most under populated part of Ireland, Leitrim suffers from ghost housing estates, with the majority found in remote areas due to rural renewal housing incentives.

With little commerce in the area, it relies largely on a slow tourist industry centred around Carrick-on-Shannon to help the local economy. Agents confirm that demand for housing is highest around Carrick-on-Shannon and lowest in the east, around Carrigallen. However property buyers are beginning to realise that it is cheap to buy here – an average €58,000 for a three bedroom semi-detached home – and naturally, if it’s cheaper now there’s a better chance that prices will rise as time goes on.

Lake Mullagh County Cavan Ireland

4. Cavan

County Cavan is arguably the most scenic part of the country but, with west Cavan – Belturbet, Ballyconnell and Bawnboy sitting way off the beaten tourist track and far from Dublin, interest in holiday homes here is weak. Nevertheless, Cavan can rely on its natural beauty with famous lakes, ideal for water sports and angling, as well as the Virginia Pumpkin Festival, which brings in around 20,000 visitors to the town each October.

It is widely believed that homes in Cavan are currently selling for far less than it would cost to construct them today, meaning you can now pick up a three bedroom semi for an average of €64,000.


5. Donegal

For picture postcard, Gaelic charm as well as ancient history, a stunning castle and dramatic beaches, Donegal has it all. For such a desirable location, why are property prices so low? Donegal is historically popular with holidaymakers from the North, yet the average sale price of property here in 2013 was €96,750 – way below the national average of €143,000.

Unemployment is the common culprit and with little or no commerce in the area, there is limited demand for housing. Places like Glenties, Gweedore, Dungloe and Ardara in West Donegal have suffered most from mass emigration and they are less easily accessed than other regions such as Rathmullan, Dunfanaghy or Downings. Property in the main county town of Letterkenny is also undersold with three bedroom semi-detached homes selling for around €70,000.

This information is non-advisery and merely meant as a general guide to the property market in Ireland. For professional advice, please consult a qualified real estate agent.

*Subsidence cover is not included