Are Property Liquidation Sales a sign of things to come?

Are Property Liquidation Sales a sign of things to come?

Are Property Liquidation Sales a sign of things to come?A crowd of nearly 300 people turned up to Ardkill Place in Ballinagh, Cavan to watch the events of a liquidator’s sale of 35 new homes unfold. Buyers and spectators witnessed (gobsmacked and smiling) an immediate sell out of the properties. Not only did the properties sell like hot cakes but a waiting list of 20 … potential buyers are firmly standing in the wings should any of the sales fall through.

It sounds like something out of a dream and even David Reynolds of Gunne Reynolds who handled the sales said “There was a queue of people: it has been some time since I”ve seen a crowd like that. It was nearly like going back to the good times”.

Well, with prices slashed by up to 50% there is no wonder why there buyers were there in their hundreds especially when you could get your hands on a 3 bed property for €100,000, a 4 bed semi for a small bit more at €130,000 and a 5 bed at €185,000!!

So, was this liquidation sale a sign of things to come? Has the Cavan sale given us a flavour of what is to come in the not so distant future? And while liquidation sales might sound well and good to some buyers, if the business of liquidation sales became popular, would they really be good thing?

Have your say

  • Property Liquidation Sales – Are they good or are they bad?
There are 31 comments for this article
  1. cancer treatment at 5:20 am

    Well, if i have the money to get such property 50% off from its original price, I will surely fall in line too. Buying new property right is now is really right because of low prices, ones the real state rebound it is going to be a good investment in the future.

  2. Caroline at 5:28 pm

    I watch with interest the effect NAMA will have on current property prices.I have been watching and waiting to buy but I still think properties are over priced in this country. I certainly seems there is a way to go before we bottom out.

  3. Gary Alder at 8:06 pm

    I am currently waiting to buy a property and like everyone who has posted a comment, I have been watching the market quite closely for the past 12 months. We are constantly being told by the auctioneers that we are at the bottom and “Now is the time to buy!!”. The one thing I keep watching is the average house prices in the UK, which currently stands at £158,565 (€182,620). The current average 2nd hand house price in Ireland is €241,504. Because of the huge over-supply here over the past few years, I will not be putting my had in my pocket to buy until these prices are either equal, or we are cheaper then the UK. Any thoughts???

  4. Anna at 6:04 pm

    I agree with you. While it’s good to see property prices coming down to more realistic levels I still believe that €100,000 for a three bed in Cavan is pretty high!

  5. elen at 8:02 pm

    It is my RIGHT to OWN the roof over my head.
    It is my RIGHT to tell the land owner what price they SHOULD sell their
    land at because they can make more,can’t they?
    I hear land prices in Africa are pre Irish 2000 prices with lots of sunshine as a free extra.
    I wounder what I will sell my firesale 100thousand euro housefor when I mouve on to a bigger family home in 2015. I’m sure I won’t be looking for a profit from some poor first time buyer, will I!

  6. julie at 3:02 pm

    Well i would take a house in Cavan, myself and my husband came to Canada in 1988 because there was no jobs to be had in Ireland. We went back to Ireland in ’99 to give it a go and found that we couldn’t afford a house there, my husband having a very good job. We where forced to come back at the end of 2000. I miss Ireland so much my whole family is there and the same for my husband. Having to settle for the odd visits there and relatives coming here having to listen to my 2 younger children crying for days and not understanding why we are here not there. So if houses are being sold off to give some people a chance to get into the market great. I’m stuck here now my oldest child having made her life here won’t go back and i will not leave her.

  7. Gerry Madigan at 6:50 pm

    Interesting comments, but we’ve always had the peaks and valleys syndrome around property in Ireland. The liquidation process is already happening just outside New York City, also in San Diego (now that’s where you can pick up a ‘real’ bargain). With the current global recession it will take a considerable amount of time before things settle back to ‘normal’ – whatever that will look like? But as long as we allow the ‘fat cats’ to flaunt their corrupt practices and satisfy their avaricious greed, we will keep shouldering the tax burden for their indiscretions. Bernie Madoff, and his similar counterparts in countries all over the world, have been bleeding the average hard-working individual for years. Unfortunately, because of the corruption within so many governments (all driven by that same greed) he and his likes have been allowed to flourish undeterred. It’s a sad day when the average homeowner has to pay the price. I sincerely hope that liquidationi sales will not become a common method of disposing of property in the future.

  8. RichardMoore at 4:54 pm

    This is the best case senario believe it or not, because in a few months NAMA will start valuing the loan books from banks and the rumour is that they will pay 75% of the loan, I think these sales illustrate that NAMA should be paying about 55% max !!!


  9. Dave at 4:49 pm

    I wish the banks and property developers who just get together admit the problem, agree on the rock bottom prices and them get rid of the houses we wont see the end to this until the loans and the houses and settled.


  10. Gavin Hesse at 11:03 pm

    Delighted to see it…..real estate people need to sanity check their crappy sales spin to viewers ….I’ve experienced some serious ‘tongue in cheek stuff’ ….agents still defending unrealistic prices + saying the light is at the end of the tunnel…I recently viewed a house with a junior ( quite ) agent giving me macro-economic ‘opinion’ ( as if it was fact ) – which was way off the mark…. agent probably was half aware herself that it was just regurgitated ‘spin’ picked up from back at the sales office from other more senior estate agent accomplished spoofers……

    David Mc Williams estimates ( few years back ) that it will be in + around right ( market balanced out ) when the average price for a 3 bed semi in Ireland is 150K

    Personally, I wouldn’t go near Cavan, but I’d like to see liquidation sales happening closer + in/around Cork + Dublin…hopefully value will come back to the buyer + the gangster bankers, government + developers from the gravy days will get their come-upance, although in Ireland we don’t demonstrate really ( too lazy ) + the tax payer ( us ) will pick up the pieces of this mess…..


  11. Laura at 9:39 pm

    I would love to see prices near Dublin come down to a realistic price. I have money sitting in my savings waiting to buy. But I am not about to buy now while the market is so wobbly. I believe there are more people like me out there that could buy now but won’t because we are waiting for things to stabilize. I look at properties in the States and what they get for their money is so much better and bigger than the cardboard boxes we get here and at half the price. My sister bought a home a year ago for 450,000 here in Dublin. Half the development is sitting vacant and who knows what her dream home would sell for now. I’m just sitting and waiting

  12. frank at 8:48 pm

    I honestly think that the quicker we get rid of the over priced stock and start to return to normal the better…the whole country is waiting for things to get a bit better, the housing industry and the car industry hire alot of people who are all worried for their jobs, no one is spending a penny, so every sector is feeling it. Maybe Sales like this might speed things up. But only if the banks are lending !!!

  13. Kevin Holland at 6:54 pm

    It doesn’t matter a hoot. Nothing does.

    Every day you open your door there are people to chat and share a laugh with. Why not just get on with that.


  14. mike at 6:37 pm

    I have read with great interest some of the above comments, for years we lived in a currupt society you only have to look at all the socalled tribunals going on and even now the closen few are making a fortune out of it, it is costing US the tax payer a fortune and no one will be called to account just another big waste of OUR money if the politians and big buisness people were made to pay for what they did none of this would have happened. I have no problem with people making money so long as it done in an honest and fair way and is not at the Real expense of others , for years the goverment watched and accepted socalled political donations while corrupt councilers got backhanders from property developers who artifically inflated the price of property , the goverment did nothing because they got huge ammounts in revenue i.e stamp duty , the banks did nothing because they made huge fortunes on interest and again let GREED take over they lived for the moment and never looked to the future , well now we are reaping the whirlwind and we are paying for it. Property prices should be brought more in line with reality and should be restricted to the people living here in Ireland , private companies and big investers should be barred from such dealings this would help to bring some much need cash back in to the local areas / economy and prevent money being smuggled out of the country, and give people the chance to get on the property ladder, people who up to now would never have been looked at by the banks because they did not earn enough, well with real prices they can afford a house, which in turn brings jobs into the local area and the redevolipment of schools,and other amienaties, please excuse an spelling mistakes

  15. Jimmy at 5:36 pm

    That situation would not be sustainable. If prices in Ireland went to that level even for the time that it would take to sell off these type of properties, it would temporarily make the average house prices here less than half the average UK prices. We would be flooded with investors from our own country, all over Europe and beyond buying at what would be the lowest property prices in any of the developed European countries. The properties at artificially low prices would be snapped up and any new builds happening could never ever be sold at those artificially low prices because the cost of building materials simply would not allow it. Incredibly, we would once again find ourselves in a situation of not enough property to cater for our own domestic market demands with the lack of new builds happening. What would happen then? The banks will still be sitting in their respective corners shivering at the prospect of loaning money to developers again. Scarcity would dictate higher prices. The demand for all properties coming to the market (new or second hand) would far outweigh supply. I don’t think it would make any sense at all for what happened in Cavan to continue. There are now positive signs of a return to economic growth in Germany and France and property prices in the UK are showing marginal increases. Hopefully our own economy will also show signs of recovery sooner rather than later. Good luck to anyone who benefited from the cut price houses in Cavan but I cannot see how a collapsed marketplace for property or any other sector will speed up the recovery process. All it will do is ensure that unemployment will continue to rise.

  16. Patrick Phelan at 5:21 pm

    I’m just amazed at the cost of and amount of properties for sale in Ireland. It seems the majority are for sale and wind up sitting dormant.
    In comparison to properties in the USA and considering the dollar exchange many, if not close to all, properties are unrealistically priced.
    It seems to me sellers are residing in a pipe dream environment should they be seeking USA buyers.
    Liquidation prices maybe the future road for properties in Ireland to bring the real estate values back down to earth.
    I would love to purchase a property in Ireland but realistically the real estate is out of reach.

  17. gerard wheeler at 5:00 pm

    property liquidation is here to stay for the immediate future until the imbalance of supply and demand is rectified.This will be achieved once all the economic parameters are posiitive and moving in the right direction i.e plus-positve ,growth attained and sustainable. In my estimation one year

  18. Ray at 4:48 pm

    Yes good thing the prices will have to come down to reasonable valuations but guess what? the banks ain’t still lending squat in this dead beat housing market. Thats what a lot of bargain hunters have to think about, even though three bedroom houses are flogged off for a bargain 100,000 squids !!!

    Cash buyers will certainly be laughing and back flippin all the way to the bank. Certainly Good value for money Good luck punterz.

  19. Lorraine Mullins at 4:46 pm

    Yes, I think we should see more of these auctions, therefore it will give more people the opportunity to get on the property ladder, or even upgrade to a bigger home etc if they so wish, and all at affordable prices.

  20. stephen at 4:20 pm

    yeah its about time the prices start coming down .bring all the house prices down..everyone that works full time should be able to afford there own place at least…hope they will, its the only way its goin too work tax them land lords that have two or more houses for now any way till we get back on our feet.its not fair for young people like myself tryin to grow up in this society working trying to get a deposit its crazy. you would wanna be mad to get a mortgage for crazy money the way things are goin now with levys and mad prices for house s .lets do something about it.action s speak louder than words

  21. Patrick Walsh at 3:38 pm

    I think it is a fantastic idea. If this happens more it will demonstrate the REAL value of property and let everyone who has a job! get onto the housing ladder. Might be good for NAMA too, help them to value the assumed €90bn worth of real estate.

  22. Naomi at 3:03 pm

    Who would want to live in Cavan??? Not me thanks. I wouldn’t take it if it was given to me for free.

  23. F McCaffrey at 1:53 pm

    Liquidation sale, now that is about as funny as “Priced to Sell”.

    Yes you will see this more frequently as it will prove a successful way for creditors to maximise their return by offloading cheaply built houses in the middle of nowhere.

  24. kevin barrett at 1:48 pm

    We have been living with and enduring alice in wonderland type property prices for many years now.Real affordability was underscored by illusory mortgage deals . Its about time this has happened , Estate agents and their developer cohorts have grown smug , arrogant , and insanely greedy.Surely more people buying at realistic speculator free prices presents a more viable alternative than stagnant , zombie estates which are blighting our landscape.

  25. F McCaffrey at 1:44 pm

    Liquidation sale, now that is about as funny as “Priced to Sell”.

    Yes you will see this more frequently in the short term as it will prove a very successful way to off load badly build houses in the middle of nowhere with little or no local amenities available.

  26. Jason Berry at 1:38 pm

    Forced sales are an economic necessity for a healthy property market. Forced sales are good for price discovery and the bottom of a market. Once the toxic properties are moved on, banks are able to lend again, downward pressure on housing prices is removed, and the property market recovers a bit. But let us not forget that the fall in housing prices is only bringing prices back to realistic and sustainable levels.

  27. Sean Flaherty at 12:54 pm

    Yes. They reflect the absurd property market in Ireland. Housing should never be seen as comodities to be bought and sold purely to make money. Housing has a vital social role. Germany is the only country that has a sensible attitude housing. House prices are regulated by government. Also rental property agreements are like business rentals, they can be for 10 years, with stability for occupants. Irelands property market is typically “IRISH”…. wink, nod, scheme, do, and get done, without regard for the ultimate cost to us all !!!

  28. Carol Ansboro at 12:35 pm

    It’s certainly beneficial if families can now afford to buy a house. It’ll mean that some of these currently empty housing estates eyesores will be populated by communities of people rather than renters which will have a positive impact for the economy in that area and hopefully councils and the government will ensure that the proper infrastructure exists such as schools and transport. The aim of developers in building these houses was to make money selling overpriced houses which were built on relatively cheap land with no thought whatsoever of who would inhabit the area. If genuinely interested people are willing to commit to a mortgage and buy a house this has a good social benefit

  29. Joe at 12:33 pm

    Yes hopefully this is the first of many. House prices in Ireland were overflated by at least 50 % and need to return to 2000 values in my view. The media, politicians, builders and bankers seem to have set their sights on reinflating the boom but that ain’t going to happen. As another poster said and average 3 bed semi type house should cost about 2.5 times income. So we have a long way to go in the price fall stakes. Estate Agents are still acting like its 2006. They need to have their cough softened for them. Hopefully these liquidation/firesale/true house price value sales will show everyone what houses are worth now in the post boom era.

  30. Sean o Domhnaill at 12:09 pm

    They certainly are. Time was when anyone who held down a good steady job could afford to buy a house, even in Dublin. Then the whole property ‘boom’ began and things went crazy. Even today people are still asking silly money for small two and three-bedroomed houses in Dublin. The sooner the price of an average house comes down to two or three times the average income, the better. Housing should not be in the hands of money-grabbing speculators as it has been in recent years.

  31. Paul O’Neill at 11:46 am

    Yes they are. We need to get money flowing through the economy again. And if that means selling properties at a realistic price then so be it. Those that seek to maximise their profits when times are good should also suffer the consequenses of their actions when times turn bad. Free the capitalist market and let the good times roll.

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