Eoin Colfer’s Wexford farmhouse drops 24%

Bestselling author’s lavishly renovated Ballymorris House down from €1.65m to €1.25m

Price drop: Ballymorris House, the Wexford home of the bestselling author Eoin Colfer

Price drop: Ballymorris House, the Wexford home of the bestselling author Eoin Colfer

 

For anyone wondering which way the market is moving, shifts in house prices on the property portals are revealing. A scan of recent asking-price changes on myhome.ie returns swathes of price cuts, with only a rare price increase dotted through. It’s clear that, faced with lending restrictions, buyers no longer have the wherewithal to buy overpriced homes. The market is self-correcting.

And if two big price drops registered in the past week are anything to go by, the corrections are not limited to the capital. Ballymorris House, the Wexford home of the bestselling author Eoin Colfer, went on the market with Sherry FitzGerald in May, seeking €1.65 million. On Monday the price dropped €400,000, to €1.25 million. That’s a 24 per cent reduction for the 416sq m (4,477sq ft) farmhouse and courtyard buildings. And no surprise, really: since January very little has sold in Wexford county for more than €500,000.

It’s time for agents to mete out some tough love to clients, even if they don’t want to hear that their homes are no longer worth what they thought or wanted

In Kilpedder, Co Wicklow, Belfield House, a period pile on 41 acres, came on the market late last month, seeking €3.25 million. Then, last week, this former home of the Odlums flour dynasty posted a €400,000 drop, taking the price down to €2.85 million, a 12 per cent reduction.

The managing partner of Hunters Estate Agent, Rowena Quinn, believes the pricing problem is endemic, and puts it down to unrealistic vendor expectations and imprudent guide prices being posted by estate agencies.

“Inflated price expectations are simply not in anyone’s interest – particularly vendors, who we as agents are bound to represent. There will always be a feelgood factor for vendors when house prices are perceived as being on the rise. However, decisions relating to selling must be supported by a real understanding of the market and property valuation.”

Quinn says it’s time for agents to mete out some tough love to clients, even if they don’t want to hear that their homes are no longer worth what they thought or wanted. Of course it would be just as imprudent to whip hopeful buyers into a frenzy by luring them in with unrealistically low asking prices, a practice also not unheard of, particularly at the overheated sub-€500,000 end of the market.