What's with the stigma?

Three good friends of mine recently replied to something I said with:
“WHAT? Oh my god.”
“Yikes, hmmm, not sure about that idea, sounds bad. I’d hate that myself.”
“Really? Wow! I’m shocked. After all these years? Are you sure that’s a good idea?”

“So what comment justified these reactions?” I hear you ask. (Not that anyone’s reading or anything). Was it “I’m going to cut out my own kidney and give it away”, “I’m selling one of my children” or “I’m leaving my husband and kids and running off with an 18 year old millionaire I met on My Space”.

No, it was “when our house is sold, we will be renting for a couple of years”.

Please someone explain to me, what is with the Irish home-owning obsession? Is it a fear that we’ll have nothing to leave our kids when we die? Is it a dislike of being indebted to someone else (i.e. a landlord) and if it is isn’t that silly as the vast majority of homeowners are indebted to someone else anyway (i.e. banks)? Is it a more logical fear i.e. that you’ll keep getting turfed out of the rental property and have to move repeatedly? What is it?

[By the way, I know it’s a big move but we’re not happy where we live and this move has been in the works for a while now and yes, I know it’s the worst time to be selling but so be it…]

I feel it is a mix of people feeling more secure in a property they “own”. also, once you own, I could imagine it would be very easy to start looking down your nose at renters, and they would not want to return to that unwashed mass.

:smiley: :smiley: :smiley:

Well, it is only a step up from a tenement isn’t it? :unamused:

For some people at least they may be trying to rationalise their own purchase.

For decades property ownership through debt purchase has been associated with wealth ans security, where as renting has been associated with poverty.

Now there is a very real possibility that house ownership through debt purchase may become the route to poverty.

Young men are inclined to purchase a home as a prelude to finding a mate. Mates have associated home ownership or at least the capacity to purchase same with security.

So what you’re saying is that house ownership is the same as a peacock’s tail.

It is an example of sexual selection; despite the fact that it is cumbersome and is a handicap to the the survival of male, females will preferentially mate with those males who have the most elaborate houses.


Well that’s a step up. I thought it was most elaborate car was supposed to attract me there for a while,

Personally elaborate house is pointless without someone “else” to do the dusting.

I once got an attempt at a nasty email from someone poking fun at the fact that since I’m renting I “obviously can’t afford to buy”.

Not long after that the same person turned up on AAM in negative equity, struggling to pay their mortgage and trying to figure out ways of evading tax to break even.

Take the comments of other people with a pinch of salt. Do what’s right for yourself. Nobody who offers you advice will be offering to help you out if their advice turns out to be bad.


We sold to rent, (and we have a small child), and a surprising number of people thought it was a great idea, including parents, estate agents, elderly uncles. There is still the feeling that we are paying the landlord’s mortgage when god love him it’s probably hardly half it, but we’ve had a surprising amount of support and worry that we might buy too soon.

Renting is dead money - would you not buy a property now especially now they’re chape. :confused:

A few of us found it very laboursome trying to find a place to rent in Dublin in the late 90s and we would have been so over the moon had there been a lot more choice in the market there at that stage. Queues and queues of people waiting to see the same overpriced rental property. I did a lot of incoherent whining back in those late 90s about why the govt weren’t doing something about making it easier for people to rent, including cracking down on landlords who don’t take rent allowance when you’re inevitably going to be on the dole at some stage in this swampy economy of ours.

Is there much that they could have done or can still do to the rental market more approachable, amenable and attractive? - I believe Dublin would have been ideal place to fuel a rental boom - it might have had a lot different and better effects than a property buying bubble.

Well, you are late to the party to be selling now, and will probably have to accept steep discounts to shift your property.

That’s quite a gamble. Especially if you’re hoping buy back more cheaply in a few years time. And with the government preparing a major bailout, a tax hike on deposit interest, and the likelihood that the ECB will have to cut rates.

A lot depends on where/what you’re selling and where you’re hoping to buy. Care to furnish some more details such as general locations and price brackets?

My understanding is that the OP needs to sell now, perhaps to move to a bigger place, but is choosing to rent it instead of buy. IN that case it makes sense.

Selling now with the hopes of buying the same kind of place in a few years is probably more trouble than it’s worth.


Well the OP can clarify, but I didn’t read that he needs to sell, just wants to trade up but is planning an extended rental period in between, I suspect to capitalize on expected price falls. In this case, the trade-up premium three years down the road vs now isn’t likely to be hugely different, especially if, as is likely, he has to swallow a hefty discount to shift his property now.

It’s definitely a gamble on major additional declines beyond the current real clearing levels. All this during a period of sustained government bailout efforts, declining ECB rates, and attempts by government to discourage people from holding large sums on deposit.

And the hassle of renting on top of it.

I’m all for calculated risks, which is why I’d need to see more details.

Thanks everyone. Lots of good insights there.

I hope you took the high road and did the mature thing i.e. put your fingers in your ears and said “na na na na na”. :smiley:

That’s great to hear. We have three children so of course their security is definitely a big consideration for us too. I’m glad it’s going well for you.


Yes I know. The things is, this is a move we’re making for lifestyle reasons. We hate where we live and never really settled here as such - no sense of community, bad schools etc. My children are already enrolled in schools in the town we are moving to (our eldest attends there already, our other two will start there in 12 months). It’s just a few miles away.

The property boom/crash kinda happened around all of this. Though that’s not to say we’re not taking it into account. We are, of course. Ideally, had we sold two years ago, we’d be laughing now. But, we can’t get that time back. We’re hoping for 270 min (it was valued at 345 in 2005 and yes, I know, that means nothing now). If we can’t sell (which is a real possibility in this climate) we’ll be crushed but will probably have to accept that our future is here.

I honestly don’t know if we’ll ever purchase a house again. Ideally, yes, I’d like to, in 5 years or so. Things have changed significantly for us of late, in terms of earnings. We’re not exactly a mortgage providers dream right now. :unamused: I’m realistic enough to know that we might never get a mortgage again. This economic downturn is affecting us a lot in terms of income. But I do know that it will cost a lot less for us to live month to month when we’re renting than it costs now, owning our house and paying (too many) short term loans. But I must emphasise those are secondary factors - we plan to move because we want to live elsewhere.

*I’m female - though I never thought to look for the elaborate house when I chose my ‘mate’ :smiley:
Thanks everyone.

I always figured that the popular fascination with owning houses in Ireland had as much to do with the lack of any tenant security as it had to do with some post famine psychological fixation with the land or other fairy tales spun about the special place that home ownership has in the Irish psyche. In my experience renting is simply not an option in the long term as tenants rights are pretty much non existent for those renting in the private market. I remember friends having their rents double in the space of a year some years back when rents were rising. LLs run the show and even the pros are often scoundrels. Over time that has built up a culture of ownership which has meant there is no pressure on legislators to correct the imbalance and also meant that there is no counter argument to the ladder hysteria (except here on the pin). There are lots of other implications to this, not least the boom bust cycle Ireland is currently experiencing. It seems that even with the explosion of apartment construction planners deliberately avoided insisting on the construction of accomadation that would suit anyone except transient young people. I dont live in Ireland so I may be wrong on the facts but it seems that this is a major area that needs addressing if the next generation are not to be subject to the kind of shakedown that this generation are stuck with.

Apologies if this has already been pointed out, but you need to tell your friends that population numbers and birth rates are linked.

When you die, Europe’s population will be tens of millions lower than it is today. But virtually every dwelling currently existing (except caravans, and the very best caravans probably WILL last that long) will be around. Most of the people in the decade younger than you will be in retirement communities/euthanasia camps (depending on your outlook).

The notion that houses are a rare, precious thing won’t be there.

When you sit your kids down to tell them you need to decide which of them gets the house, they’ll be arguing over who should get your car, and they’ll care as much about the house as they do about the dog’s blanket.

Very true. Great point.

Not to mention the fact that when I die my children will be 61, 59 and 51 if I play my cards right (and give up the fags) so if they’re still waiting for mammy and daddy to bail them out at that stage in their lives, we have a whole bigger problem than inheritance stress, we’ve essentially been crap parents. :laughing:

so you are seriously suggesting that houses will be essentially worthless


I suggest a quick visit to some of the states in former East Germany will show you what a declining demographic does to property prices.

And within living memory in Ireland there were large numbers of houses in rural Ireland, recently abandoned, that were worth little more than the value of the building materials.