Last year was a strong year for the prime country home market, according to property advisor, Savills Ireland, with €198m worth of transactions taking place – the highest level since the Property Price Register was introduced in 2012.
Using Property Price Register data, Savills examined prime country home transactions, which are defined as transactions greater than one million euros and located outside of Dublin, the major regional cities, and north Wicklow.
Comparing last year with 2021, total transaction values increased by 48% from €134m to €198m. Furthermore, with the average deal value remaining at approximately €1.5m, the increase was driven by more transactions taking place in 2022, with 130 compared to 86 in 2021.
The comparison with the pre-covid era is even more pronounced, with €65m and €99m taking place in 2018 and 2019 across 46 and 49 deals respectively.
The coastal town of Kinsale on the southern coast of Cork was the country's most popular towns in this housing market segment, making up 9% of transactions. Kerry has been another very popular destination where buyers from US and Germany have been extremely active.
The second, third and fourth most popular locations were Kildare, Wicklow, and Waterford.
International buyers accounted for 43% of deals, while cash buyers remained the dominant financing arrangement, with 90% of buyers in this market segment acquiring properties without financing agreements, up from 87% in 2021.
Commenting on the data, Head of Country Homes at Savills Ireland, James Butler said, "These locations likely highlight the movement of households away from County Dublin to benefit from homes with better amenities and space, all facilitated by a more flexible work culture in many of Dublin’s largest employers. Buyers in this market segment prioritise living standards and amenities over location."
Top 10 Prime Country Homes Sales 2022 (€1m+) % by Location
1. Cork (28%)
2. Kildare (14%)
3. Wicklow (13%)
4. Waterford (8%)
5. Kerry (6%)
6. Meath (6%)
7. Wexford (4%)
8. Galway (4%)
9. Limerick (3%)
10. Donegal (3%)