In recent data accumulated by the CSO, it has been empirically shown that people living in Dublin are seeking a more affordable living location and over ¼ of internal migrations in Ireland have seen people leave their county in search of a more economical place to live. This evidence supports the idea that young adults are looking for better value for their money, with the median age of migrators sitting at 28 as recently as 2016.
With house prices seemingly unaffected by the Coronavirus pandemic, and rent remaining at exorbitant levels with no signs of reducing following the ease of lockdown, it is looking likely that this desire for improved living standards away from the city centre of the county’s capital will be ramped up in the coming month.
Working from home has become the new normal for a lot of workers, especially those based in Dublin city. With this dimension shift has come a change in preference and a new acknowledgement of the existence of alternative ways of living. No longer having a stressful daily commute as part of the workday, the requirement to live close to the office doesn’t exist anymore, and so workers are looking for new places to live, at a fraction of the cost.
Where are they looking? While the CSO data from 2016 showed a large proportion of Dublin migrators moving to the commuter belt of Wicklow, Meath and Kildare, recently collected information from auctioneers and estate agents would seem to indicate that there has been a spike in interest in properties beyond the commuter towns, with Cork becoming a popular destination for expatriate workers looking for a lifestyle change.
A Global Sentiment Survey was recently completed by Savills estate agents, the results of which, would appear to provide further evidence of this shift in priorities following the pandemic. Rural areas are no longer perceived as poor locations and are now being seen as a cost-effective option for a place to live with more space.
People have been given an opportunity to really audit their quality of life. Not only are they looking at their occupational situation, but they are focusing on what really matters to them. People are reconstructing their perception of a happy lifestyle and are looking for more space, they are less reluctant to live further from the city, and the facility of working from home means they are looking beyond Dublin’s commuter belt for a place to live.
In a recent study ranging from April 27th to May 5th 2020, NUIG analysed a dataset of over 7000 employees who were working remotely. The results of the study illustrated that of the 7000 workers, over half of them were new to remote working. Despite this, 78% indicated a desire to maintain their newfound means of working beyond the lockdown parameters. Adults aged between 31-40 were seen to be the most enthusiastic about this shift.
It would seem that more space is being desired by young employees in Dublin. No longer shackled by necessity to live near their place of occupation, people are looking for a place to live that will give them more space, but more importantly, a place to live for a much lower price.