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Stressed to the max with this housing market

  • 23-03-2021 7:17pm
    Registered Users Posts: 166,026 ✭✭✭✭LegacyUser

    Hi, I know no one can really tell me what to do but like many people, my anxiety is through the roof at the moment. The housing market in this country (particularly Dublin where I live) is just killing me. I'm nearly 34, female, and have been living at home since August 2018, saving lots every month. Unfortunately, since covid, so has everyone else, and now panic buying of property is through the roof.

    I'm bidding on an apartment at the moment which had an asking price of €250k and the current bid is €271k. I don't know what to do. Overpay to exit the limbo that is my life at the moment?

    As a woman, I have the added pressure of a biological clock. I really don't want to bring people back to my parents' home; I can't anyway, because of covid and also I live with my brother who has extreme mental health issues. I haven't had sex in a long time! So fairly sexually frustrated on top of everything else, although too depressed/stressed at the moment to notice...

    I lived away for years and years and just feel like a complete failure and loser at this point, despite being on quite a good salary. The stress caused by this insanely dysfunctional housing market is at an all-time high for me. It consumes my thoughts from morning til night, when I struggle to sleep. I'm also going through something else extremely serious, which is reaching a peak at this time, although it will be concluded in the next few weeks.

    I have no idea what to do. Pay ~€18k for a year to rent some dump? House share? That will probably just make me feel like crap at my age, but at least it would be a change to my situation. I am also from Dublin and have most of my friends and family here, so cannot see myself moving anywhere else within Ireland. I'd prefer to move back to UK, and I never ever thought I'd feel that way.

    Just feel quite low and very very stressed :( Feels like this government doesn't give a s*** about people like me. People who will not be having kids until their late 30s (at this rate, and if I'm lucky) because there is nowhere to live. Never mind the fact that I would have to find a man first! I'm not even 100% sure I want kids, but I'd like to have options. A life.

    Anyone going through similar?


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,831 ✭✭✭Rubberchikken

    There's a lot going on - house sex future partner future babies.
    All of that would do a bodies head in.

    What is the most important thing at the moment?

    Re house purchase, have you considered counties bordering dublin? Prices are ridiculous I agree but there might be a better chance there.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1 nikanikanika

    I just wanted to say I 100% understand all of this. I'm in the same situation only a couple of years older, which makes it even worse and even more stressful. It's horrible watching other people settle down, get married, start families and buy houses when you feel like you have none of it just because you haven't been lucky enough to meet the right person. I have also been living away for years and felt like I was doing well, and then my relationship ended and I'm back to square one again.

    It definitely is easier said than done but I would try to focus on one thing at a time. It seems like the housing issue is the most within your control in that there are steps you can take to sort it, and you're not relying on meeting someone or other things that are totally outside your control. It's also great to have the option of buying your own home - as difficult as it is, at least it is a possibility for you and you're not forced to rent or share forever, so that's a big plus. It feels like this pandemic is maybe a good time to focus your efforts on finding a home? Assuming you're WFH, you'll have loads of time to decorate it, make it lovely, etc. Whether you should overpay depends on many factors, really...would you be happy to live there? I think if it improves your life and gets you a place of your own, it might well be worth least you wouldn't be wasting more and more money on rent or still living at home?

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,845 ✭✭✭Antares35

    Hi OP don't feel bad or like a failure..lots of people have moved back home to save or because they were priced out of the rental market etc. We are currently living in the family home (though it's partitioned at least) but was a hard adjustment after living independently for a decade. Focus on the benefits - being able to save more being the biggest one I suppose.

    Have you thought about looking slightly outside Dublin? We are looking at places along the train lines etc. I simply refuse to get into a bidding war and get wrapped up in this panic buying. I'd rather wait it out than be playing mind games with sellers, estate agents and other buyers.

    It's different for everyone I know, but there is a lot of hype around women's fertility and how it "goes off a cliff" post 35 and all that. I had my first at 36 and will be almost 38 having my second in a couple of months. And I'd been tested at a fertility clinic a few years before and told "don't wait".

    Best of luck :)

  • Posts: 0 ✭✭✭ Vincent Nutty Schoolmaster

    I had a sale agreed collapse at the last second in January. I'm also seeing the madness right now and I have no intention of taking part. I'm happy to wait a year.

    My advice would be to get out and rent for a year, just to escape your family. For the sake of your mental health.

  • Registered Users Posts: 237 ✭✭horseofstone

    Would you consider living outside the capital. For example, their is a good train service to and from Edgeworthstown and house prices are really low in comparison to Dublin. Living in Mullingar would be another good option with an excellent train service and its a decent size town with a good night life.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 3,189 ✭✭✭topmanamillion

    In terms of buying a house I think anyone buying a house inside the next year are making a big mistake.

    Viewing houses has essentially been outlawed coupled with daftness like deposits required to bid on a house and the likes. People are also hanging on to houses to see if prices will go up further with house building completely stalled for the past 8 months.

    All of that means there's a serious lack of housing stock out there and what's there is frankly sh1te. Tiny apartments with grossly inflated price tags and family homes in probate from the the 1930s and 40s!

    If I were you OP I'd focus on moving out of home. If that means a bit of a commute then so be it you need your own space and a bit of freedom from family dynamics. You've been at home for a few years now and renting/house sharing for a year before you buy won't drastically hit your ability to save.

    Tldr; one step at a time. You need your own space - rent, date, take 6 months to a year and you'll still have more savings then and more than likely the housing market will look a little better when builders go back to work. It's rock bottom now with zero value for money.

  • Registered Users Posts: 888 ✭✭✭TheadoreT

    I mean sounds like you're doing well. Not many single people can buy alone in Dublin so the fact you're earning enough to get a mortgage around 250k range you should be proud of.

    Re dating have you not met any guys who rent or have their own place? You seem to be putting the entire onus on them coming back to yours.

    I left Ireland 3 years ago after a relationship ending when I was 30 and feeling similarly stressed about prospect of ever being able to buy despite being on an above average Dublin salary. Its just all a bit grim and leaves you wondering what you went to college for/built a career to kinda just be struggling to buy some lower end apartment. You're kinda just questioning is this it!?
    Now in sunnier climes and much happier, have bought a lovely place and infinitely more comfortable on a similar salary to what I was on.
    Theres far more negatives than positives to Ireland nowadays, great to go back at holidays when its buzzing but asides from that its just an expensive hole with rubbish weather and not a great deal to do aside from drinking in comparison to other countries options. Leave imo, irish family and friends will always be a flight or zoom call away

  • Registered Users Posts: 310 ✭✭FromADistance

    The pressure cooker of living at home can't be easy expecially having lived away from home for so long. But in fairness you sound like you've done most of the heavy lifting. It can be very easy to loose sight of the goal when you're stressed. If you really want a house you will get there. You need to ensure at the moment that you're concentrating on yourself... eating well, practising mindfulness, getting enough exercise, moderating alcohol etc. If all comes to all, you always have the option of moving out for a while.

    The market is bananas at the moment, no one can really tell you what to do as we don't know your individual circumstances but you'll create more problems for yourself in the longer term if you allow this matter to consume your life. I know it's important but the most important is your health, family and friends. The rest will fall into place.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,368 ✭✭✭Airyfairy12

    I think in situations like this its really important to look at things in your life to be greatful for and positive about. Reading through your post I can see quite a few things that you should focus on.
    1. You have a good salary so presumably a good job. Many people have lost their jobs in the last year, youre lucky enough to have held onto yours and retained your high salary.
    2. Youre in a position to save money. Living at home is not ideal by any stretch but fortunately you've had that option which has allowed you to save for your future. Many people dont have that option and lose most of their wages to rent, never having the option to save.
    3. Youre healthy.

    Besides all of that I can see your point, working hard, earning a high salary but living at home with your parents because housing is unaffordable. Its totally scandalous. Im a similar age, have 2 degrees, not on a high salary, infact id probably be earning more without a college education, I will never own a home, its just not something I can ever see myself being able to afford to do. I look at my friends who dropped out of school or got pregnant straight after their leaving cert, never went to college or worked much yet theyre set up in lovely free houses and a good lifestyle. Sometimes I look back and regret not doing what they did, id be much better off now.
    Point being youre not alone in how frustrated you feel, its like the government punishes people who try to get ahead in life and do everything the 'right' way.

    As for your fertility, I know several women who have had children over the age of 38, you have time.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,753 ✭✭✭Pentecost

    Would you consider living outside the capital. For example, their is a good train service to and from Edgeworthstown and house prices are really low in comparison to Dublin. Living in Mullingar would be another good option with an excellent train service and its a decent size town with a good night life.

    Agree that this general idea is worth considering. I'm considering my options myself being single and thus having to find something I can afford on one income. But, having some knowledge of both places, stay well away from Edgeworthstown. Mullingar is a grand town though.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 3,368 ✭✭✭Airyfairy12

    Would you consider living outside the capital. For example, their is a good train service to and from Edgeworthstown and house prices are really low in comparison to Dublin. Living in Mullingar would be another good option with an excellent train service and its a decent size town with a good night life.

    Its cheap but most people would rather live in a ditch than live in Edgewothstown.

  • Registered Users Posts: 128 ✭✭stuboy01

    Chin up OP, you're not a failure.

    I'm in a similar situation but am married with children, and were living with her parents. was renting up to a year ago and decided to save for house. wasn't planning on covid and all having to work and school from the house. AAARGH!

    However, It is a bad time to buy at moment. house prices are artificially high in the short term as there is no building happening, so little supply and, as you are finding, too many bidders. better to hold tight for another year or so to allow building work to resume (this is advice from David McWilliams recent podcast either on 23rd or previous thursday)

    Listen, living with parents sucks, especially at our age, but for gods sake dont panic buy, you'll probably regret it and end up paying slightly more than you can really afford, especially if interest rates go up in a few years. (that can add hundreds per month to your repayments).

    SAVE SAVE SAVE for the next year, you definitely wont regret that in a years time.
    good luck and go get some! take that edge off LOL.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,231 ✭✭✭Elessar

    Just wanted to post and say you're not alone. I'm a guy and also mid 30s, also single and living at home. The housing market is crazy in Dublin and it's really difficult as a single person to get anything, let alone anything decent. Thanks to the pandemic and restrictions I also haven't gone on dates or had sex for over a year and it's demoralising. I live with my mother who is good to me but she has low moods and can be very difficult to live with. I too really need my own space and it's frustrating as hell at times. But we'll get through it, everything will work out in the end. As they say "this too shall pass" - and I've always found this to be true.

    As others have said you have a lot of positives going for you. Make sure to try and remind yourself of that. I find mindfulness helps - there's a thing call the mindfulness minute which is just taking a minute out of your day to just live in the present moment. And try to think of some things that you are grateful for. Gratefulness helps.

    Maybe take a break from the househunting for a while until the work stress dies out. Give yourself time to relax and take a break from it all. You'll get your own place eventually, even if it takes a bit more time.

  • Registered Users Posts: 166,026 ✭✭✭✭LegacyUser

    Sit down and write down exactly what you want OP. Be honest with yourself and put all options out there. If you won't move outside of Dublin either to buy or rent and don't want to go overseas then yeah you'll have to spend crazy money to stay in Dublin or stay living at home. No one has an easy solution here as any option requires some compromise or cost. I get wanting to stay in Dublin but if you meet someone tomorrow OP and were planning kids you'd likely have to look outside Dublin to find somewhere large enough for a family vs an apartment for a single person. It sounds like your super stressed living at home OP and that is clouding judgement. I think your mad to over pay for an apartment just to get out of that house.

    Given the current situation and so many working from home consider renting for a year further down the country as your not going to be missing out on any nightlife or gatherings. Rent will be cheaper than Dublin and won't require having to house share etc, gets you away from the stress of living at home and time to really evaluate what you want. You'll be able to date etc find you hate being down the country and want to over pay for a place in Dublin or that you want to leave Ireland altogether but at least you'll make the choice with a clearer head and not on impluse due to being stressed living at home.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,813 ✭✭✭Wesser

    Buy the apartment. Honestly i think you should buy it.

    I bought my own gaff 4 years ago and i was in a similar situation to you. It was brought me great joy and peace.

    Ask yourself

    Can i afford it. Ie < 35 % of net income going on my mortgage... no other loans?

    Does it meet my needs. Ie location.. proximity to work...proximity to transport... nice peaceful area ... no social problems. LOCATION!!!

    Do i like it? Don't buy an apartment that you do not like.

    You are a very successful person and are doing your best. I think you are trying to take on too many problems in one go and is stressing you out. Just focus on the apartment for now. One thing at a time. Have self compassion towards yourself. Youre doing great! And so does everyone who has posted here think the same!

  • Registered Users Posts: 166,026 ✭✭✭✭LegacyUser

    I'm in the same boat , if not older .... David McWilliams podcast on buying at the moment might sway you against buying. It did for me, if you can tolerate staying at home , do , there is nothing happening socially. Nothing. I'm renting with a friend and I'd rather not give that up . However I'm saving very little.
    Plenty of people in your situation. And remember pandemic is squeezing the will out most , regardless of what their situation is.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,189 ✭✭✭Gekko

    Hi OP

    What got my attention was your mention of stress and depression. Are you managing that or finding ways to deal with that somehow?

    I’m a guy age 40, living at home who despairs of the housing market - and all the consequences of that and the pandemic too that you mention.

    I see the inflated prices now of some places I was looking at 2 years ago when they were just out of reach and now they’ve gone up in price by a crazy amount

    It feels like a race I’m always destined to lose

    The slowdown in building because of the pandemic means the market is only going to get worse unfortunately so that’s the first thing to consider

    Could you do a list of pros and cons for the different options you have and see how they compare on paper?

    If you can calculate how much more you could save by staying where you are, and then try and get a figure for how much property prices for those in the market you’re in have risen over the past year, you’d maybe get an idea of where that would leave you to factor into the equation as well

    Maybe get a few opinions then from friends and/or relatives?

  • Registered Users Posts: 166,026 ✭✭✭✭LegacyUser

    OP here, thanks for all of the responses everyone. It's good to just get some of this stuff out sometimes and know that there are other people in the same boat.

    I don't expect it to be easy to buy in Dublin, at all, but I think it's the sheer panic I can see from bids in the last 2-3 months that is really freaking me out. Offers going €20k over asking within a day, etc. So over the last few days I have kind of decided to take a step back from bidding, probably just for 1-2 months initially and I'll see then where I am. I think it's the getting involved in bidding wars that really stresses me and puts me in a bad place. As I said, some of the other big stressors in my life at the moment will be wrapped up by then and I can maybe focus on property a bit more.

    I also think I shouldn't write off dating completely until I have a place- as someone else said, the guy could well have his own place. But it's definitely difficult to have casual sex when you're worried that doing so could kill your parents. And I feel this issue is completely ignored by mainstream media- there are so many people like me and other posters on this thread who have barely touched another human in well over a year. I just feel invisible to society.

    But like everyone else, I have to take deep breaths and focus on the good, maybe even start with daily gratitude exercises and meditation or something. I have a stable job and good friends- both huge comforts. I'm not paying extortionate rent. I'll just keep trying to get lots of exercise and fresh air, eat well, not drink a lot, and take it one day at a time.

  • Registered Users Posts: 9,061 ✭✭✭leggo

    I read a good article by David McWilliams in the Irish Times today about how now is the absolute worst time to buy property and the reasoning behind it is similar to what you describe OP. There’s a scarcity of supply and currently absolutely zero building being done to allay that, owners are in no rush to sell so can drive the price up and people are overpaying wildly for substandard properties as a result.

    I mean...if you find a place you love at a price you’re happy with and can afford long-term, great. If not, I don’t see anything you’ve said that necessitates a rush to own.

    If you have a deposit banked and are good to bid for the right place, what’s to stop you renting short/medium term until that place comes up? The argument against renting in Dublin is that it’s near-impossible to’ve already bypassed this. If you’re thinking rent is ‘dead money’ or anything like that...that’s an old Celtic Tiger attitude touted by a generation of people using similar “I can buy so I will” logic that you are now and ended up signing up to awful mortgages in half built estates as a result and regretted it.

    Why not take a step back and see that you’re actually in a decent situation in that you could, in theory, buy now if the stars aligned. Then wait for the market to work for your benefit and find a temporary solution that allows you to focus on the short-term goals currently stressing you? Nobody has ever regretted taking time to make a big, life-changing decision to make sure they got it right. Plenty of people have made those decisions too quickly and regretted it.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,016 ✭✭✭Blush_01

    OP here, thanks for all of the responses everyone. It's good to just get some of this stuff out sometimes and know that there are other people in the same boat.

    OP, sounds like venting here helped a bit, which is great.

    I'm a bit older than you, unemployed, studying full time, no savings to speak of, living with my parents. I in no way intended to be unable to get a job while I returned to college in September, but global pandemic yadda yadda.

    Unless you absolutely love somewhere that you've seen right now and would live there forever, I wouldn't be buying. I have too many friends in huge negative equity from their starter homes they bought 12-15 years ago, and it's like a vice on the rest of their lives.

    Doesn't help on the relationship front, but if you're feeling overwhelmed again, it's absolutely normal to be hacked off to the back teeth, and there's nothing wrong with talking to someone about your frustrations.

    Good luck with it all.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 274 ✭✭Not in Kansas

    Hi OP. Please listen to the recent episode of the David McWilliams podcast called It's Time for a Buyers Strike. Hang in there.

  • Registered Users Posts: 313 ✭✭araic88

    Hi OP. Please listen to the recent episode of the David McWilliams podcast called It's Time for a Buyers Strike. Hang in there.

    There's a lot of talk about what he said. I'm intrigued to see if it's enough to help end some of the panic buying & BS carry-on from vendors & estate agents.
    I've followed the "Crazy House Prices" page since listening to the guy who runs it on the McWilliams podcast.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,068 ✭✭✭mistersifter

    >mod snip - although I get that you're trying to help, please don't link to or embed videos in PI/RI as it is against the Charter here. Thanks <

  • Registered Users Posts: 9,061 ✭✭✭leggo

    I’m sorry I brought up the McWilliams argument now, people have begun to think it’s a thread about that and not the OP’s issue. But that video is nonsense. It’s just a lad reading sentences from an article and saying “that’s not true” then not providing any counter argument. I stopped watching after he tried to make his “the house doesn’t know it’s probate” then didn’t substantiate that at all. That’s the kinda thing a dodgy salesperson says that sounds really insightful, and people who want to sound like they know what they’re talking about saying “mmm of course...”, but it’s absolute nonsense.

    Elderly people’s houses often aren’t suited towards first-time buyers but will often still fetch the same price, if not more than a newly built modern house. My grandparents’ house is for sale now. That needs major work done (and that’s before you talk stuff like decorating because it looks and feels like an elderly person’s house) but is going for a huge amount because of the location it’s in. Whoever moves in there will need to re-insulate the entire place, knock down walls, re-carpet, an entirely new heating system will need to be installed etc etc on top of paying a premium rate. But it’s still getting major bids because it’s a house for sale in a nice area, the market is desperate and Irish people are historically awful with timing big purchases and as a result we’re controlled by markets instead of controlling them ourselves.

    That belief leads to nonsense like the above video with your man saying “you can’t predict markets”, as if they aren’t man-made entities, when just months ago it became global news that a bunch of people on Reddit made a dying company in GameStop worth billions just for a laugh. Markets can absolutely be predicted, not only that but they can be controlled too. But they aren’t in situations when everyone acts in their own self-interest, then the latter people become easily manipulated and cede control. We’ve literally lived all of this before like and saw one generation go broke, did nobody learn anything from the Celtic Tiger?! (*checks what party the Taoiseach represents*) Nevermind.

  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 158 ✭✭Zebrag

    Hi OP

    Myself and boyfriend are on the same boat. We've come with the conclusion that buying in Dublin just isn't possible at all. At much as we would like to be local to people and work, price wise and the rent we pay, it'll be another 2-3 years of continuous talking about our dream home before we get a deposit needed for a house in Dublin. At the moment we've picked a comfortable amount for a deposit as agreed with a broker and a time frame of the end of 2021 so we can hopefully be approved in Jan 2022 and start looking.

    For now, our rent is more than our savings each month and that includes bills and so on before we can even sit down and say "oh this house is only such and such amount".

    The chances of us moving a good 1 hour outside Dublin for the price we are aiming for is higher than being able to afford a 1 bed apartment in Dublin which is not what we are aiming for.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,068 ✭✭✭mistersifter

    >mod snip - although I get that you're trying to help, please don't link to or embed videos in PI/RI as it is against the Charter here. Thanks <


    I would suggested checking out that solicitor's youtube channel though, .He gives some good advice on houses and lots of other stuff.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,319 ✭✭✭JustAThought

    OP - there is no buyer strike and all over the country people are making it their aim to benefit from the covid by saving to buy. People are continuing to bid and buying houses, no matter what a pop star styled podcaster says. the influx of tens of thousands of visa enabled workers to the state and massive control of swathes of blocks of appartments by investors who build or bulk buy only to rent will continue.

    Stay at home, decrease your online and casual take-away spending, you can go for hikes or walks outdoors and use
    local parks to de-fuse in and do outdoor yoga or keep fit from youtube - whatever. You ate in a good place to keep up with the competition and save more. By moving out you are putting yourself at a financial disadvantage with none of the perks and none of the benefits of usial flatshares or living out.

    Covid has made everyday living together in a house a bit more of a pressure cooker - so find ways to cope and take the stress off with exercise or self entertainment . Don’t jeaprodise your future dream by giving up now.

    I’d also +1 for setting your sights on a house even if its further out & not an appartment if possible. Particularly if its your end goal to meet someone or to have a child.

  • Registered Users Posts: 13,060 ✭✭✭✭fits

    If you have your deposit saved you could maybe rent for a while and just take the pressure off yourself for a bit. I know it’s ‘dead money ‘ or whatever but your quality of life is important too. Or if that apartment is really nice just buy it. ( as long as you can afford and are happy to stay there)

    My sympathies too by the way. I went through similar a few years ago and we got our mortgage and house over the line by the skin of our teeth. It can be very stressful.