You’ve made the decision to move to Ireland – in this blog post I list the best cities to live in Ireland, the best websites to search for rental properties and how much rent you can expect to pay per month.
In July 2020 my husband & I re-located from living in Queenstown New Zealand to my home country of Ireland. Having lived abroad for over 10 years (also living in Whistler Canada and Sydney Australia) it was a huge deal for us moving to Ireland. Despite me being an Irish citizen (I’m from the cool city of Cork) & living in Ireland from the age of 3 up to 23 (when I moved to Australia) – there was still a lot for me to get my head around in moving to Ireland.
We faced a lot of hurdles finding a suitable rental property in Ireland and so I’ve put together this incredibly detailed blog post to help you successfully find a place to rent in Ireland. I also have a blog post on renting in Cork, it’s an incredibly detailed guide.
Finding a home to rent in Ireland
As you can imagine, it can be very difficult to find decent housing in Ireland. It is a very competitive market and rent can be quite expensive (depending on the area you wish to move to). Before starting your search there are a couple questions you should ask yourself first –
- How much rent can I afford?
- What area do you want to live in? Try to narrow it down to at least 5 areas.
- What does your ‘ideal rental property’ look like? How many bedrooms does it have? Does it have a garden? Parking? etc.
What you need to do to be successful in finding a place to rent in Ireland
- Join the local housing groups on Facebook. Just search in the facebook search bar for relevant groups to join. I’ve found the best Facebook groups in the largest cities. In Cork – Cork – Rent a house; in Dublin – Dublin Rent a House; in Galway – Galway House Hunting for Sound People; in Limerick – Rent in Limerick; in Donegal – Donegal Property Rentals.
- Register your interest with Irish letting agencies like Sherry Fitzgerald that way you will be alerted when a new property is advertised and can be first in.
- Ensure you have good previous rental references (even if they are from overseas) and enough money for a deposit (typically one months rent) and your first months rent.
- Try to arrive in Ireland before you plan on starting a long-term rental, stay in short term accommodation like this stunning top floor apartment outside Dublin or this stylish apartment also in Dublin so that you can search for properties without rushing/panicking and get to know the areas. You may fall in love with a specific area that you never previously thought of.
How much is Rent in Ireland
It can be quite expensive to live in Ireland especially if you plan on living in one of the big cities like Dublin or Cork. Dublin especially can be extortionate for rent, depending on the area expect to pay up to €2,000 per month!
Average rent in South County Dublin is €2,156 per month, followed by South Dublin City at €2,094 per month, Central Dublin at €2,016 per month and North Dublin City at €1,847 per month.
In Cork on the other hand the average rent in the city is now €1,574. In Cork county areas, the average rent is now €1,131. At the other end of the scale counties like Leitrim, Donegal, Longford & Roscommon are significantly cheaper.
Best cities to rent in Ireland
Below is a list of the most popular counties (that is what states are called here in Ireland) with expats. They are popular for various different reasons e.g most of the jobs are located in Dublin or Cork, Dublin has a lot of tech jobs and Cork a lot of Pharmaceutical jobs. Whereas counties like Mayo and Donegal are more rural and scenic and offer a more relaxed lifestyle – rent is also cheaper in these counties.
Cork is the second largest city in the Republic of Ireland, it is known for the stunning West Cork area (gorgeous beaches!) and it’s lively city center filled with bars, restaurants and shops and of course the famous English Market. There are a lot of jobs in the Pharmaceutical industry here thanks to large companies like Pfizer and Novartis located in Ringaskiddy in the county. Tech giant Apple’s European Headquarters is located on the Northside of the City. The best areas to rent in Cork include Douglas; Ballincollig; Carrigaline and Cork City. The average rent in Cork City is €1,574 and in Cork county is €1,131.
Dublin is the capital and the largest city in Ireland. It is where most people aim to live when moving to Ireland but rents here are notoriously expensive – same for buying property. You will struggle to find an affordable rental property in the City Center with average rents in the CBD at just under €2000 per month. Area’s like Howth and Skerries are desirable and $$$ because they are pretty, safe seaside areas. Cheaper areas to rent in Dublin include Swords, North City Central and CityWest. The average rent in Cork City is €1,574 and in Cork county is €1,131.
Galway is a quirky city and is a big student town (the National University of Ireland is located here). It’s one of my favorite cities in Ireland and it’s filled with artists and Irish music. Galway is also the gateway to the stunning Aran Islands. The most desirable areas to rent in Galway include Galway City, Clifden (very beautiful area), Oranmore, Cong and Spiddal. Average rents in Galway City are €1,021 for a one-bedroom, whilst in the suburbs (the other areas I’ve listed above) a 2 Bedroom House averages at €1,114 and a 3 Bedroom House at €1,277.
Limerick is the third largest city in Ireland and I have to admit the city had a bit of a bad reputation and was nicknamed ‘stab city’ but that seems to be in its past and now Limerick is a popular student city. I attended the University of Limerick and loved living in Limerick during my student years. Some of the most desirable areas to rent in Limerick include Castletroy (where the University of Limerick is located); Croom; Adare and Ennis Road. The average monthly rent in Limerick is €1003 which is very reasonable. In fact, the people of Limerick have one of the highest amounts of disposable income than anywhere else in Ireland.
Mayo seems to be a particularly popular area with expats – particularly those of retirement age or close to retirement. It’s located on the Wild Atlantic Way and has gorgeously wild beaches as well as charming towns like Westport. The best areas to rent in Mayo include Westport; Ballina and Claremorris. The average price of rent in Mayo is a super-reasonable €487 per month for a one-bedroom apartment!
Located in the very North of the republic of Ireland and bordering Northern Ireland – Donegal is one of the cheapest areas in Ireland to rent and to buy property. It’s home to some of the best beaches (and surfing) in Ireland and is becoming more and more popular with expats. The best areas to love in Donegal include Ballyshannon; Bundoran; Donegal Town and Letterkenny. The average listed rent is now €595 in Donegal.
Where is the cheapest rent in Ireland
Rents are consistently high across the country, with the cheapest found in Leitrim – at €517 a month. Along with Leitrim, the cheapest places to rent in Ireland also include Longford, Donegal and Roscommon, at €572, €593 and €595 respectively.
Best websites to search for rental properties in Ireland
- Facebook Groups are a great place to search. In Cork – try Cork – Rent a house and Rooms to Rent is your best option; in Dublin – Dublin Rent a House; in Galway – Galway House Hunting for Sound People; in Limerick – Rent in Limerick; in Donegal – Donegal Property Rentals.
- Daft.ie is great for houses and apartments for rent
- Myhome.ie has a small selection of houses for rent in Ireland
- Let.ie is another good rental property website
If you’ve found the place you want to rent, then, there are several documents you will need to give to the Letting Agent or Landlord. Make sure to have these with you at every property viewing to give you better chance at being successful (first in best dressed as they say).
Applying for a rental property in Ireland
The documents you should have at every viewing include:
- A form of I.D like your drivers licence, passport and your PPSN (Personal Public Service Number)
- References from past landlords
- A current work reference
- A current payslip or bank statement that shows your income
What you need to know about paying for utilities in Ireland
Utilities are typically not included in the monthly rent price in Ireland so make sure you have additional savings to pay electricity/gas and WiFi.When renting in Ireland, you need to set up the utilities accounts (gas, electric, WiFi etc.) in your own name. Ask your landlord which companies supply your gas and electricity, as it’s easier to stick with the same companies. You can of course shop around to get the best deal.
WiFi and TV providers are competitive in Ireland so make sure you shop around to get the best available deal. As well as the above you will also need to pay for waste collection (we pay around €30 a month in a rural area, it’s typically cheaper in urban areas).
You don’t need to pay water charges in Ireland.
The best short-term apartment rentals in Ireland
I think the best thing you can do when searching for an apartment in Ireland is rent a short-term apartment for a week or more so that you can get a feel for the area and decide if this really is the right area for you to rent in. Below I’ve listed some of the best short-term apartment rentals available in each area.
- In Dublin – this stunning top floor apartment in the seaside town of Skerries or this stylish apartment in a good location on North Circular Road. This one-bedroom apartment in the CBD is also a great choice!
- In Cork – Cork City Center Self Catering Apartments near the City Hall is great value at under €80 per night. Oakleigh House one-bedroom apartment is just a 6 minute walk from the CBD.
- In Limerick – this cozy apartment in Dooradoyle is near a large shopping center and this riverside city apartment has great views and is centrally located.
- In Galway – this luxurious apartment in Salthill, a short walk from the city is gorgeous! And this apartment in Eyre Square in the CBD is a great choice too!
- In Mayo – this penthouse in Westport town center is truly luxurious or this newly renovated waterfront apartment.
- In Donegal – this Letterkenny town center apartment or this seaview apartment in Bundoran are excellent options.
Thanks for reading my blog, Aimee
I hope this blog post has helped you to get your head around renting in Ireland Hopefully now you’re well equipped to go out and find your dream rental property.