Ex-army homes sell in under eight hours
Published on Tuesday 11 May 2010 07:46
More than 300 first-time property owners can't wait to move into their new homes in Ballykelly after the ex-army houses they snapped up sold for bargain prices within hours at the weekend.
The Loughview development of 317 houses at the former Shackleton Barracks are under new ownership after selling out on Saturday. The first 100 homes sold in a staggering 100 minutes.
The two, three and four bedroomed houses hit the market priced between 30,000 - 65,000 and were all sold to first time buyers, hundreds of them queuing on the roadside for up to eight days before they went on sale at 9am.
Among them were Limavady man Stephen McLean and his fiance who were first in the queue and secured the two bedroom house they wanted for an incredible 30,000.
Also celebrating was a tired but ecstatic bride-to-be Ashley Dickson from Ballykelly. She snapped up a three-bedroom home for 45,000.
"I never thought it was possible to get a house like this at such good value," beamed the 21-year-old. "We queued from the Saturday and it was definitely worth the wait. Everyone in the queue really pulled together and kept each other positive. I'm getting married next July and this is a fantastic opportunity for me and my fiance. It takes the pressure off. We'd been looking for something for a while and when we heard about these houses we were really impressed. We can enjoy being married and not to have to worry about a big mortgage. We're over the moon."
Sharleen Doherty from Limavady bought one of the showhouses for 59, 950.
"This was an absolute dream come true to get on the housing ladder and it's a credit to Bob Mullan who has put everything in the house. I don't need to buy anything," said the 30-year-old.
Limavady lass Georgina Cosby bagged a three-bed house for 46,500.
"It's my first house and I'm over the moon," said the 23-year-old. "It's excellent. It still feels a wee bit surreal and I don't think I will believe it until I get the keys. I never really looked for a house before because of the prices but, when I saw these houses and how they were priced, I knew it was too good to miss. My sister and my friend also got a house and we'll all be living next to each other.To be honest, when we started queuing last week I was a bit wary but, DMC took control and they did see everybody right and did it fairly. I was scared that come Saturday match it was going to be a pushing match, but It was all very controlled and fair. If we hadn't of queued we would have missed out."
The houses were bought from the MoD by Dublin-based Merrion Property Development.
Patrick Morwood from Merrion realised there would be interest in the properties but was shocked people had queued for up to eight days beforehand.
"I never for a second thought we would see a sight like this, especially in the middle of a property slump," he said.
DMC Estate Agents sold the houses for Merrion and Derek McAleese revealed there is now a waiting list of 120 people waiting to snap up any of the 317 homes if sales fall through.
"There was a good conscious effort to sell to first time buyers so It's great to see it."