The chronic shortage of private accommodation available in the rental sector in Galway City is driving rents towards levels last seen at the height of the Celtic Tiger boom.
Figures from property website daft.ie show that rents are now averaging €875 per month in the city – that’s up 7.2% from a €816 average one year ago.
Average rents here are now up 15% since their lowest point in 2011 – another 5% or 6% will see them return to levels last seen during the peak at the end of 2007.
Economist Ronan Lyons from daft.ie – who is also Assistant Professor of Economics at Trinity – says the chronic shortage of suitable properties is continuing to drive up rents in Galway.
“In many ways the lack of choice is more concerning than the high rental rates, although clearly the two phenomena are inextricably linked.
“Unlike the sales market, then, where rapidly rising prices have drawn out significant amounts of secondhand supply, rising rents have not seen any increase in listings. If anything, the opposite is the case. And the picture is even worse for building new homes,” said Mr Lyons.
The figures show that rents in Galway City for a one-bed property are averaging €605 per month; for a two-bed the figure is €813. For a three-bed, the figure is €979 per month; for a four-bed it is €1,143 and for a five-bed, rents are averaging €1,489.
For the sake of comparison, in December 2007 – the peak of high rents in Galway – the figures were: a one-bed for €689; a two-bed for €945; a three-bed for €1,047; a four-bed for €1,169 and a five-bed for €1,497.
In County Galway, the average rent is now €592, up 7% (from €553) on a year ago.
Read more in this week’s Connacht Sentinel
Gardaí bid to identify body recovered near Mutton Island
Gardai have launched an investigation following the discovery of a body in Galway Bay yesterday afternoon.
A member of the public raised the alarm after spotting the body in the water while walking on the causeway to Mutton Island.
Galway Fire Service, Gardai and the RNLI attended the scene and recovered the body at around 4pm, before it was taken to University Hospital Galway for a post mortem.
It is understood that the body may have been in the water for some time.
Gardaí are currently examining a list of missing people in the city.
Gardaí investigate fatal Carraroe crash
A man in his 30s has died following a road crash in Carraroe in the early hours of this morning.
At 3.50am, Gardaí and emergency services attended at a single car collision on a minor road.
The driver of the car, a man in his 30s, was pronounced dead at the scene a short time later. A passenger in the car, a male in his 30s, was taken by ambulance to Galway University Hospital. His injuries are not thought to be life threatening.
The road is currently closed and local diversions are in place. Garda forensic collision investigators will examine the crash site this morning.
Land Development Agency rules out Merlin ‘land grab’
From this week’s Galway City Tribune – Campaigners have warned the Land Development Agency (LDA) to keep its hands off Merlin Woods.
Local community group Friends of Merlin Woods said that the amenity on the east side of the city is not suitable for residential development.
It has sought clarification on whether the LDA has earmarked part of the recreational and amenity lands for housing, after it appeared on its online database of publicly-owned lands.
In a statement to the Galway City Tribune, the LDA said its database compiles a list of all State lands, not just land for development.
In relation to Merlin Woods, the LDA said: “Those lands aren’t included in the LDA developments in Galway. The lands database is a map-based tool which compiles all State lands and has no reflection on development potential.”
It came after Caroline Stanley of Friends of Merlin Woods raised concern that land within Merlin Woods had been earmarked for development.
“I’d be concerned that it’s marked as residential when it’s in RA (Recreational and Amenity) land. Some is marked ‘open space’ but some is marked as ‘new proposed residential’ on its [LDA’s] database. It makes us wonder why. We’d like clarity and to clear it up.
“The message we’d like to get out there is we need clarification, whether it’s a mistake on the Land Development Agency’s part, or whether it is an area that they consider as a residential area, which the community would be opposed to. We need clarity. It could be something that is in line for development later on, we don’t know, and we need clarity.”
Councillor Owen Hanley explained that the fears around Merlin Woods stem from legislation currently making its way through the Oireachtas that would strip councillors of powers to veto the transfer of land to the LDA for housing projects.
The Bill would also allow Government to direct what public lands – including those owned by local authorities – can be transferred to the LDA for development of social and affordable housing.
This is a shortened preview version of this article. To read the rest of the story, see this week’s Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.