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The importance of local knowledge in property

With all the general election campaigning over the past few weeks, and  today as we are going through the final rounds of vote counting, it strikes me that politics – like property – is all local. The strongest, most popular and (we have to believe) most  hard-working politicians in each constituency  wins. What has changed in the last few decades is the party system; candidates locally win locally, not simply by being a member of any political party. This is because as the world is getting smaller due to better information systems and technology, the reality is that people continue live in one area (at a time!) and that’s where their priorities lie.

I am not a politician but I do know property and I know the south east region. And because of this I know that when you are thinking of buying or selling your home, it pays to think local. While the media talks about ‘the’ property market in Ireland, every frustrated seller or house-hunter knows that there are many different markets operating in every county in Ireland. The marketplace locally is measured by supply and demand but it can be a bit more complicated than this. For example, when we talk about supply, are we comparing like with like?  Rural versus urban, size versus location, houses versus apartments… All these distinctions make up genuine supply. Similarly, when we try to gauge demand locally, we have to consider the cash buyers versus mortgaged buyers, investors versus home-buyers, even experienced home-buyers versus first-time buyers.

While it is true to say that every home for sale needs only one buyer, the financial reality is that several bidders are required to really test the value of a property and to ensure that that value is achieved.

This is where a local expert comes into their own. Not all sellers are in the same position and not all buyers are equal. To avoid time wasting, a clued-in local agent can attract genuine buyers to the right property and introduce enough competition to have the sale move along, in order to achieve the right price in a reasonable time frame. As you might imagine, this is difficult to do with only one bidder!

The best way to make this happen is by maintaining a database of ready buyers and keeping this updated. Here at Kinsella Estates, we dedicate time and attention to buyers, we stay in touch with them. By doing this, we already have a good idea of who the likely buyers might be when we take on a new property for sale. In any given area, there is a finite number of suitable, finance-ready buyers.  We make it our job to know them.

And this is particularly true for commercial property. Whether you are buying or selling, looking to lease or rent out your commercial premises, knowing your local market of consumers is the main test of how well a commercial unit can be sustained in any given area. On a given street in any large town, there will always be buildings that are more in demand than others just 100 yards away (similar to residential neighbourhoods!). By not knowing the area well, valuations can be way off and that’s never good news, for buyer or sellers.

With the relatively high level of vacant commercial property around at the moment, sellers need to know who is buying, and buyers need to have their own use for the property or be able to attract the right tenant in the right type of business. There is no doubt that commercial property requires a bit more ‘juggling’ or keeping more balls in the air than most residential transactions, but this is where the local knowledge comes into play. This probably explains why anecdotally, 30% of all commercial property is transacted off-market, which means that it never appears on property websites like Daft.ie and MyHome.ie but is available.

For specific queries or to speak with a local property expert about your buying and selling needs in Wexford, Wicklow and surrounding areas, contact Michael, Alan or Eileen Kinsella at kinsellaestates.ie.

Alternatively, you can email me directly on michael@kinsellaestates.ie or telephone: +353 53 94 21718

on Wednesday, March 2, 2016 in News

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