Sunday Property Round-Up, September 16th 2018 


I know that I said it last week but this has been the busiest week for industry news and commentary since the summer lull.  Below is a selection of the main stories of the week together with highlights from the broadsheets today.   The main focus in The Sunday Business Post today appears to be the upcoming presidential election and RTE’s accidental 11th hour role in the outcome of the previous campaign, however, it does have an advertising feature for new homes that might be of interest to house-hunters and residential investors.


By the way, while it is not property-related, my favourite line across all the Sunday papers today is by Brendan O’Connor in the Sunday Independent who writes “Our indignation that Donald Trump was coming to Ireland was matched only by our indignation that Donald Trump was not coming to Ireland“, that says it all really.


If you missed last week’s Sunday Property Round-Up, which was packed with construction technology and proptech news, you can catch up here:


As always, you might let me know if I have missed out on any relevant property news by emailing


(Apologies in advance for any typos, it’s difficult to get good help on a Sunday. Also, I use voice to text dictation so just sound out anything that really doesn’t make sense in a strong rural accent and that should help!)



Sunday Read –  NIMBY-ism


Most of the Sunday papers, including broadsheets, have coverage of the ‘Take Back the City’ protests today.  According to the Sunday Independent the group’s demands (their words, not mine) include: CPO of all group-occupied properties For community housing, property vacant for long periods should be brought into public ownership for housing, and rent caps of 20% of wages/income.


Also, in the property supplement of the SBP today, Karl Deeter tackles the thorny issue of NIMBY-ism,  particularly in the context of affordable housing.  In his column, he criticises local government for delays in housing development, which obviously impacts on house prices.  He cautions against homeowners  trying to preserve the status quo and acknowledges that, as a nation, we need to start accepting development  of affordable housing within our local areas.   Of course he is absolutely right.


With this in mind, I felt that the article and video below were worth sharing:


Human Psychology As An Essential Tool For Building Smart Real Estate:




What we don’t understand about gentrification – TEDx [#digitalplacemaking] 





Trending Story – The Development Land Agency (LDA)


Earlier this week the housing minister launched a €1.25bn Land Development Agency to build 150,000 homes over 20 years. The agency is apparently ready to deliver with an initial pipeline of State land capable of delivering 10,000 homes. All lands developed will be required to have 40% social/affordable element to them.


Conor Skehan writes about the Land Development Agency, or LDA, in the Sunday Independent today.  To reduce it to a few line summary would be a massive disservice to him and you.  This is, without exception, the best piece of commentary that you will read on the LDA this week and I recommend that if you have an interest in this, pick up the Sunday Independent and read through this twice or maybe even three times. Interestingly, after going through the details that we know and outlining some of the ‘unresolved contradictions”, The columnist then goes on to outline a story of what success will look like for the LTA in and around 2025.  The columnist  then goes on to outline what success will look like for the LDA in and around 2025.  It is the most insightful article you will read today.


Other relevant coverage:


First home of 150,000 promised under Government’s new plan won’t be ready until 2020



‘Affordable’ homes in new scheme would cost €320,000, Minister says





The Agile Agent

Getting  Ireland’s property marketplace digital by default

As most of you will be aware, our ‘ Agile Agent’ 12-month digital transformation programme for estate agents and auctioneers across Ireland kicks off nationwide this month. We are only taking one estate agency from each geographical area (to avoid any competitive conflict), please contact me directly to discuss availability in your local market. For areas where we cannot offer programme participation, we will be sharing free monthly ‘Proptech Prompts’ so that agencies can start their own in-house digital transformation (sign up below).


We are hosting a proptech showcase of innovations and new technologies for participating estate agents in Citywest this October.  Email me or any of the Property District team for further details or to schedule a chat.


To get involved and for free monthly Proptech Prompts, please



Property of the Week


STUNNING PROPERTY WITH BESPOKE GLAZED STAIRS IN JOHNSWELL – Kilkenny home is a rare gem and has the wow effect via Fran Grincell Properties:

Other Property News






  • The lead story in the Sunday Independent today highlights how the real cost of living in Ireland has soared over the past five years.   The newspaper is reporting its analysis of the CSO consumer price index, which shows that despite annual rate of inflation of 0.7%, the real cost of living has actually risen dramatically. Rent is up 44%, insurance is up 18.7%  and education costs are up 17.7%.


  • One of the other lead stories in the Sunday Independent today is by Philip Ryan headed ‘Cabinet in social housing “class war” row’.  This refers to a “heated“ cabinet meeting earlier in the week where Finian McGrath attacked Fine Gael  policies on social and affordable housing.  He accuses the party of looking down their noses and painting a negative image of social housing.


  • In the business section of the Sunday Independent today, commercial property editor Ronald Quinlan writes about the booming build-to-rent sector in Ireland.  He quotes the latest CBRE report, which shows that international investors invested more than €500 million in residential investments here over the first six months of the year.


  • Business editor Samantha McCaughren  reports that Tetrarch  is planning for the housing in Citywest,  however development will not begin until 2020.  This property group is also the subject of the lead business story in The Sunday Times today, with Gavin Daly  reporting that the group is on track for a €400 million IPO.


  • In The Sunday Times today Colin Coyle  reports that developers Richard Barrett and Noel Smyth “Battle for Ardoyne“. This is a continuation of the story that has been ongoing for some time now. Bartra Capital Property Group  has bought eight of the 46 developments in Ardoyne House in Ballsbridge, however, it now appears that Noel Smyth  has also been buying units there and owns at least seven, together with several garages.  both have a representative on the board of the management committee. We will watch this space.


  • Also in The Sunday Times today, Marlet (Pat Crean)  is apparently “advancing plans for more than 1100 apartments in a single development in the Dublin suburb of Tallaght”.   This development will also include a public plaza together with shops and restaurants.


  • Interestingly,  trading has been “suspended indefinitely“ in Moralltach shares by the NSX (Sydney exchange)  according to Niall Brady.  Regular readers might recall that Irish owned company was featured here several weeks ago. According to the article, the suspension is on foot of issues raised by The Sunday Times about the ownership  of the company. It will be interesting to watch this one play out.


  • In the Sunday business post today, Jack Horgan-Jones  writes that the former John Player site is to be sold to private developers for up to €90 million. This Dublin 8 site has been subject to much speculation over the years and it is thought to have potential for more than 600 badly-needed new homes.


  • Further to the property tax commentary above, in the SBP today Michael Brennan reports that Josephine Feehily, Former Revenue chair, has worn government that our current property tax system could fail if it does not reform properly.


  • Also in the SBP today, there is a focus on the  construction Industry Federation in advance of the annual conference on October 2.   This feature covers the changes in the industry including innovative new technologies from offsite construction to 3-D printing and virtual reality.  The CIF has also  been instrumental in attracting women into the industry over the past number of years with a series of initiatives.


  • Joe Corr,  President of the Irish Planning Institute, has an interesting  opinion piece in the SBP today in response to the draft guidelines on urban development and building heights (which is open for public comment  for another week).  The planner agrees that restrictions on building heights within the city centre or to be relaxed, however, he points out that there are other ways to achieve compact urban growth. For examples, by increasing density along hi-capacity public transport routes  and by building smaller homes to deal with decreasing household sizes.













Proptech and Construction Innovation


  • Are you an Irish-led or Ireland-based #proptech business?  If so, please take five minutes to add or update your details to our internationally-shared listing here: SIGN UP: and to keep up-to-date on all things tech and innovation for the planning, construction and property industries, head over to, the national resource website for innovators, investors and mentors or email .






  • Is the #proptech promise to change property forever being delivered?





Crowd-sourcing:   New Facebook Group for Irish Property Buyers & Investors


As many of you might know, my annual property book The Irish Property Buyers’ Handbook (since 2011) has undergone a rebrand for 2018 and will now appear as part of The Property Insider series, published by Oak Tree Press, the first three titles are now published and available here.

For the first time, the 2019 edits will be crowd-sourced and will include home-buyer and investor queries, with crowd-sourced and editorial team answers. Join the Facebook Group here to contribute:

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