Des and Breffni O’Rourke
Buying after renting in Waterford
Des and Breffni O’Rourke. Photograph: Paul Sherwood
Des and Breffni O’Rourke bought a four-bedroom detached house in an estate in Dungarvan, Co Waterford. They’d been renting in the area for six months but were in no rush to buy because they felt that, while property prices had stabilised, rental prices were affordable.
Des enquired about a mortgage, made an application and got approval the next day. While he makes it sound easy, his wife Breffni had been working away in the background putting together the forms they needed; forms from employers, salary certificates, stamped full-time permanent contracts, payslips for six months, proof of address, passports and proof of savings. Both had savings in separate accounts that amounted to the 10 per cent deposit they required.
They went for a 25-year mortgage fixed for a two-year term to give them flexibility but hope to pay it off in 20 years. It feels different living in a home you own, says Des. “When we rented we had no emotional connection to the property. When you buy, everything you put into the house you get great value from because it’s yours and you own it.”
He’s discovered DIY and is doing lots of work to the place.The house is a long-term project but there was no dirty work like rewiring or replumbing to be done. “While there’s a lot we want to change, it is fantastic not to have to move into a shell like most first-time buyers do,” says Des.
In conversation with Alanna Gallagher