Glut of pre-63 properties coming on market

Growing interest in Victorian and Georgian houses divided into flats has been triggered by decline in property values

€795,000 is being sought for  each of four adjoining Georgian houses (to left, with blue doors) at 44/50 Upper Rathmines Road

€795,000 is being sought for each of four adjoining Georgian houses (to left, with blue doors) at 44/50 Upper Rathmines Road


An extensive range of pre-63 residential investment properties are to be offered for sale in Dublin after being out of fashion for more than a decade.

The renewed interest in the Victorian and Georgian houses divided into flats and bedsits has been triggered by the fact that they have declined in value by even more than the housing market generally in the city despite being able to show high rental yields.

The whole transition stems from an acute shortage of rental properties in many parts of the city but particularly in the older suburbs such as Rathmines, Rathgar and Portabello.

Estate agent Coleman Connor of O’Connor Shannon in Rathmines, which has specialised in the sale of pre-63 properties over the years, says that some of the period houses now going for sale are available at one-third of their selling prices during the property boom in 2006.

He said that while recent market reports suggested that rents had increased by 7.5 per cent over the past year, he believed that the figure was closer to 12 per cent and would continue to rise as the supply of accommodation dries up.

Accommodation ‘crisis
Connor attributes the contracting rental market to a number of significant changes – the fact that there has been no increase in the city’s housing stock over the past five years; the large number of families fortunate enough to have sold their homes before the crash and now forced to rent because of the uncertain economic conditions and the problems of finding replacement homes; and the ever-increasing number of pre-63 and other rental properties withdrawn from the market as Dublin City Council steps up its inspection of older building to ensure “minimum standards” are observed in the rental market.

Connor says the search for rental accommodation was now reaching “crisis levels” among the student population and a great many were being forced either to commute daily to and from their homes or move into B&Bs.

For all these reasons, and the fact that there is a moratorium on capital gains tax if properties are bought before the end of 2013 and held for seven years, Connor is expecting competitive bidding for nine period houses with a total of 94 residential units in a mixture of one and two-bedroom flats and “studio” or bedsit apartments.

Four adjoining Georgian houses owned by a Co Roscommon builder at 44/50 Upper Rathmines Road are going for sale at €795,000 each. Three of them have 11 flats each which, according to the Connor Shannon agency, are estimated to produce €100,000 annually.

A fourth house, 50 Upper Rathmines Road, has been totally refurbished and fitted with modern kitchens and bathrooms and an individual gas-fired central heating system for each of the six residential units. The house is also priced at €795,000 and is producing a rental income of €68,400.

The estate agency is quoting €650,000 for 66 Rathgar Road, which has nine apartments bringing in around €70,000 in rent.

On South Circular Road, a price of €340,000 is being sought for Number 227 which is yielding €65,000 from nine units; number 229 on the same road, producing €70,000 from 12 units, is available at €350,000.

The agency is looking for €750,000 for 21 and 23 North Circular Road which yield a combined rental income of €140,000 from 17 apartments. Close by, €360,000 is being quoted for 40 North Circular Road which earns €65,000 from eight units.

Hora Property Consultants are also handling the sale of two pre-63 Victorian houses at Harold’s Cross Road in Dublin 6W. A price of €650,000 is being sought for 378, an end-of-terrace house with nine flats, some of them modernised, and a large front garden with parking for eight cars. The adjoining house, 376, available at €625,000, has 10 flats but they need upgrading to comply with the new minimum standards for private rented accommodation.

Aidan Hora says that despite offering an attractive investment proposition he believes that both houses will most likely appeal to buyers with a view to restoring them to single family use.

An almost identical house at 370 Harold’s Cross Road, which has been carefully restored as a single family home, is now for sale though Sherry FitzGerald at €850,000.