Affordable house in Dublin sells at 90% above original price

Ó Cualann co-op house sold at discount for €170,000 goes sale agreed for €325,000

A three-bedroom house in Ballymun has sold for €325,000, an increase of more than 90 per cent on its purchase price when it was bought under an affordable housing scheme less than four years ago.

The house built by housing co-operative Ó Cualann Cohousing Alliance went on the market two weeks ago for €250,000 a mark-up of almost 50 per cent on its original sales price of €170,000.

It is the first of the houses to be sold on privately since the estate of 49 houses was built in 2017 and 2018 at Baile na Laochra in Ballymun, for low and middle income earners eligible for affordable housing.

To be eligible to buy the Ó Cualann houses single buyers had to have an income below €59,000 and couples a combined income under €79,000. A 10 per cent deposit was required, as well as mortgage approval for the remaining sum. Buyers also had to become members of the co-op.


Homeowners selling within 10 years had to pay a clawback fee to the co-op related to the discount on the purchase price.

Following intense bidding in recent days through agent Auctioneera, which saw the price rise by €55,000 on Wednesday alone, the sale was agreed at €325,000 on Wednesday evening. This would result in a clawback payment of €57,353 leaving €267,647, a profit of almost €100,000, for the vendors.

Ó Cualann chief executive Hugh Brennan said the sales price was astonishing.

“I am amazed by it, but given the market at the moment, and the publicity this sale got, I suppose in that sense I’m not so surprised. It is still an astonishing price, but it also goes to show that quality of these houses.”

Ó Cualann will have to use the clawback money to repay Dublin City Council for the cost of the site.

The council sold the land to the co-op for €1,000 per house plot. On the open market the same plots would have cost up to €30,000. The council also waived the development levies of €86.40 per square metre.

However, Mr Brennan said he hoped the council might allow the co-op a small amount for legal and administration fees.

“We will have some negotiations with the council, but we don’t expect anything other than a small amount. If we get anything we will be delighted.”

Mr Brennan has said he would prefer for the houses to be sold directly back to the co-op, if the original buyers wanted to move on, so they could be resold to other eligible affordable housing purchasers. However, he said, mortgage lenders were not willing to agree to this restriction on future sales.

Olivia Kelly

Olivia Kelly

Olivia Kelly is Dublin Editor of The Irish Times