Are apartment prices in Sandyford ever going to rise?

I bought an apartment in Aiken’s Village in Sandyford in 2006. I don’t even like to think about how much I paid for it (more than I should have been loaned anyway!). Was happily living there by myself and had the other room rented out…then met my better half, eventually got married, had babies etc. So, moved out and started renting a house for myself and my family to live in. Couldn’t stay living in the apartment as I needed more space, a garden etc. for the kids.
I’ve rented out the apartment in Aiken’s Village. Selling wasn’t an option as the market was/is so bad.

However, every month I have to top-up the rental income for the mortgage repayment on the apartment by a lot…like over €1,000 just to break even with the mortgage being paid on it. Am also struggling to pay my own rent on the house I’m renting, pay kids crèche fees etc. It’s crippling me and I am struggling very hard to keep my head above water…living hand to mouth…trying to do extra work, getting money into the house in every way that I can.working every hour I can. My apartment is still in about €80,000 negative equity. As soon as it breaks even, I’m going to sell it. I don’t have a tracker mortgage unfortunately but even if I did I want rid of the apartment!

I can’t believe how low apartment prices still are though. Like a 3-bed sold for €285k in Cluain Shee recently. And 2-beds are selling for around €235k/€250k. Seems so low given the location is brilliant…like I used to walk to the Luas from my apartment in Grianan Fidh. And the development is nice, loads on-site next door in Belarmine too.

I am literally losing sleep over this. I haven’t slept properly in years over this. It has me in knots. I just don’t know what to do if mortgage interest rates rise or if my own landlord raises our rent.

I just wonder if apartment prices in Sandyford are ever going to rise? The 20% LTV that was imposed on 2nd time buyers seems to just have flattened the market (I know that was the objective, to slow it down) but it leaves people like me in a bad state. That extra money that I have to top-up the mortgage with would mean the world of difference to me.

Is there any inklings that apartment prices will rise in this location? I just don’t understand why they are so low at the moment given Sandyford has really taken off with jobs etc. Thanks

I don’t think 250k for a 2 bed apartment is low. You’re anchoring on the price you paid for it.

My 4 bed house is worth about 350k, which is pretty much what I paid for it in 2004.

You have my sympathies, btw.

sorry, i cannot answer your question and i am not sure if anyone really can. if you sold it now what would your repayments on the outstanding balance be? If they are sufficiently lower than you are currently having to top up each month then maybe you should consider selling. It’s worth talking to your bank or an advisor. It may lower your overall monthly repayments and would allow you to move on from this phase of your life. best of luck with it.

To be honest , if I was going to live that far out, I wouldn’t be looking for an apartment. It’s a suburban location.
It has never appealed to me as somewhere to live so I think 250 for an apartment is a pretty good price (I wouldn’t pay it)

You have invested a lot in it already but maybe it is time to decide if it is sustainable anymore. You are under a lot of pressure trying to make it work, should you look at bankruptcy instead , sell the apartment and try to write off or reduce the loss. By the time you are struggling to pay the mortgage the tax etc would it be better to try to get rid of it and reduce your outgoings.
Still kids do grow up and hopefully in a few years they will be in school and reduce the money going out and improve your position.

My sympathies also.

Unfortunately I don’t see where the room for price rises is. €250k (for that 2-bed) means having €28k deposit and almost €65k income. Not crazy money, but how many people have that and earn that before they’re looking at having a family? And, as you point out, once you have a family a 2-bed isn’t much good. Rent is at an all-time high (apparently - close anyway), so there won’t be improving yields to push prices up either.

Is there any prospect of reducing your mortgage payments, either by lengthening the term of going interest only for a while?

(The cynics would suggest you just stop paying entirely and let them come after you. Can’t see it would do much for stress levels though)

I was in a similar enough situation not too long ago. Admittedly you seem to be under financial stress, which did not really apply to me however. I think the safest thing you can do is conservatively assume that there is not going to be any short term upside in the value of your apartment. On that basis, have you considered moving your family back in for a year or two? I know it is not ideal in terms of space. I don’t know how much rent you are paying but it is probably safe to assume that moving back to the apartment would save you money. If you can amortise your mortgage more quickly, that is the best way to get out of negative equity.

I got approval from my bank to sell my apartment back in 2014 and carry c. EUR 50k of residual debt on the same interest rate and term as the original mortgage. A similar proposal should make some sense from your bank’s perspective as their secured asset is in negative equity anyway. At least this way they are guaranteed a large chunk of their capital back up front, while they are no worse off on the residual debt. EUR 80k of debt on a variable interest rate over say 25 years can’t be more than EUR 500 a month

Thank you all. Really appreciate that you took the time to reply. Moving back in to the apartment wouldn’t be an option-there just wouldn’t be the space for us all. I have approached the bank re: selling it and paying the negative equity as a loan. Max term they’d give me was 10 years, which meant the repayments were €100 more each month ballpark. So that left me worse off & couldn’t afford that. Will just have to wait and hope that it comes up a bit in value and that the mortgage amount decreases and my own rent that I pay out doesn’t go up! The stress of it!!!

My sympathies. I do think Sandyford is a good location and has some potential. Probably not enough to ever get out of NE though.

Would you consider going through an insolvency process, for example bankruptcy? I know it’s not very Irish, but if you’re not sleeping this could give you a clean slate fairly quickly. You will otherwise likely be topping up this mortgage for the next 10 years at least. A brief insolvency process could have you out the other side debt-free in 1-2 years (depending on whether they change it from 2 to 1).

Is there any chance that you could negotiate even a 1 year moratorium on mortgage repayments to give your family some breathing space? You could try to identify someone in the bank branch/lending centre to plead your case to in person/plead hardship/burst into tears if necessary. On what has happened in the past they should be able to allow this if you can get to talk to a senior enough person.

What about increasing the rent on the apartment (or is it at market rate already?). €1000 a month subsidy seems extremely high, it must have been one hell of a jumbo mortgage or else the rent is possibly too low?

+1, I’d think about this.

You’re renting a second place so no threat to to anything owned there.

Seem like an option as long as there isn’t an issue with a professional body or similar that you’re a member of.

You seem to be under severe stress.

You can’t just go on like this and hope the market picks up - you need to do something and now if it’s affecting your life!

320k (250k+80k NE) mortgage might be ~2k/mo on SVR over 20 years remaining.

Rent ought to be at least 1500, but there’s income tax on that.

I think Mantissa is right. I would suggest getting a good financial advisor. In the interim, advise your bank that you are in danger of falling behind on your repayments. This will categorise you as a ‘pre arrears’ customer. If they are doing their job right they will ask you to fill out a Standard Financial Statement (SFS) and they may get their Arrears Support Unit involved. You are likely to get a far more sympathetic ear from them.

PS it has been some time since I worked in retail banking but I think this is still the process

€2k - €1.5k = €500 subsidy.

Would the expenses + tax on surplus combined be €500p/m (€6k)? Possibly I guess, definitely not far off with any initial fit out capital allowances running out in 2013. So guess you are right!

€1500 rent (in rent bubble) v €2k mortgage - ouch OP, ouch!!

Look mate, this is my thoughts/opinion and I hope it serves you well - I could be completely wrong and you apartment could double in price next year, but here’s what I’m thinking;

Why are you still paying the mortgage? Let it go. Embrace the fact you cant afford to pay it.
Focus on your quality of life and give the keys back to the bank. If the bank don’t want to deal with it, pocket the rent into a seperate bank account (I await the wrath of the pin) but perhaps the more this goes on the more likely repos will occur.

What benefit to you will you get from trying to pay it off? You won’t be able to save a new deposit for a house at this rate.

It reminds me of the people in 07/08 who were on the radio giving out about loosing their deposits they had paid for a 500k shoebox apartment and the developer went bust. In hindsight they were blessed.

You are where you are. Look after yourself and your family, if you happen to have a few bob left over - piss it against the wall. It’ll help you sleep.

If other pinsters disagree, happy to be slated, but I cannot see ANY reason to pay it back. Cant be any worse than the position you find yourself in.

Best of luck whatever you do.

Edit - you will obviously at some stage look at getting your own place again, but there’s no major rush.
Edit 2 - You should consider negative interest rates may be on the cards, and this would be in your favor on the apartment value. But, that would be speculating.

What are the chances of that after defaulting on the mortgage?

Hand back the keys and walk away. Have you looked at declaring bankrupt? The term of bankruptcy has been reduced recently. And from an ethical point of view, you will have lost your deposit and subsidized it by €1000 a month for the last few years and have nothing to show for it. I think its time bank can take its share of the mess now.

And to answer your question, despite being a good area, I cant see capital appreciation in apartments here in the near future.

Best of luck anyway!

If they pocketed the rent on the side from day 1 - they could have a 120k (10 years at 12k rent) deposit saved up.
With a deposit like that, a bank has little risk on a 200k house, perhaps repos will be slow for another 8 year and the OP can buy outright, point is, live for the moment.

These are the realities, not that I’m not happy about no repos taking place, but it is what it is.

I doubt if they’ll ever go back to 2006/07 prices. I work with a lady who spent half a mil on a 2 bed apartment in Sandyford and she’s in a similar situation to yourself has two kids and now renting elsewhere as apartment is too small for two kids. I think at this stage she’s resigned herself to keep paying the mortgage and renting.

Wow thanks all for the great advice. Some great food for thought given. I’ll have to have a think about it over the next few days. Thanks again everyone.