How to find a House on rent in Athlone ? How did you find one ? Can you share your experiences?

When i was looking for a house to rent there was nothing available within the town, except a few in Irish Town and Silver Quay, for which i didn’t hear back from the agents at all, despite sharing all the references. Since, i was not in Ireland when i started my house hunting, i used to look at the ads on daft.ie and call up people on a daily basis. Many of them did not entertain my requests, as they wanted to see their prospective tenants personally. So, i lost out on many of the options. But, i still persisted and asked a few of my friends to go for any of the open viewings.

Fortunately, my friends were able to find a house in Coosan after sometime - although, it was a little outside the town, considering it would take me some time to get a car here- i found a house and i did not want anything more. I arranged for the deposit and first month’s rent to be transferred while i was still outside the country.

Many of my friends , who at that time considered 1100 Euros rent as prohibitively high, find it is the new normal now. I can’t find any good house in a town center location for anything less than that now.I have even heard people paying 1200 EUR for a 2 bed in Strand’s Court. I remember paying 550-650 EUR for a 2 bed in Ardri back in 2012, when many of the houses were vacant and landlords were competing against each other to let out their homes.

I recently accompanied my friend to a viewing in Ardri, only to find that the landlord had already decided to let the house to someone else the next day. I know many of them who have been looking for a house from the past 2 months with no success whatsoever.

What i find amusing in all of this is that even a decently paid working professional, who is considered middle class , and is supposedly able to afford these rents, finds himself helpless with no support from the government and cannot even afford to buy a house. I have even come across people, who have been served eviction notices , desperately trying to buy a house in Athlone, just to spare themselves and their families from all the hardship. But, not everyone can do that.

Are you trying to find a house for rent in Athlone ? Why no share your travails here ?

Hi Everyone,

To give you a background. I am working full time for almost a year now and have mixed experience for Athlone as a place to live and settle.

I will start with good experience. People in athlone are friendly and warm generally with everyone. The life style is relaxed and laid back almost in everything ;). You won’t find huge cultural shock except for one thing, here people will greet you anywhere or everywhere whether you are walking on the streets, you eating at a diner or you hopping in a pub and they except the same from you. I think they deserve the same. For me the biggest reason to move to Ireland was also the Irish people, nice and easy going. Although things can change at work, who won’t get privileges as you are not Irish.

Now I will share my not so easy journey to find a place in athlone and cope up with the unregulated housing market. Before making my mind whether or not I should move to Ireland, I searched the rented accommodation in athlone, the rent were in range of 900-1100 for a 2 BHK apartment. I had some contacts in the same company and they told me the rent has spiked up recently and it will go further north as the IT jobs are flourishing in Ireland. So, I decided to negotiate on the salary package but HR rejected it by saying if rent will slash down in future then we won’t decease your salary and that my friends is the silliest line I have ever heard. Somehow I made my mind to move Ireland. I was part of a group where I have interacted with a few people and arranged my accommodation in prior. I did that because I was aware of the housing crunch in athlone because of surge in demand. I spent over 6 months relaxing and didn’t bother much about finding a new place for my family which is suppose to join me next month. Then came the real struggle and near to disaster situation in athlone housing market to find a rented apartment. The average take home salary is around 2,700-3,000 Euros per month, out of which more than one third of your salary will be gone in rent and basic amenities like electricity bill, broadband and TV. But this is not the worst part. The worst part is yet to come. You have to spend almost 2-4 months if you want a good apartment in the town center unless you get too frustrated and decide to take an apartment outside the town center. I have spend a lot of time searching a decent one on daft. Sometime auctioneer will give you a time for viewing or most of the times they will ignore you like you never exist for them. With all your efforts if you get a call for a viewing, then you have to complete with almost 15-20 people for that apartment and it’s a lottery that auctioneer will tell you owner will decide whose name it will be. But at the end of the day the auctioneer will tell you owner have given the apartment to somebody from his own contacts, then why you are arranging these viewing and wasting our time. They don’t even understand the importance of your time, they will give you a viewing time and you have to be there else apartment will be gone.When you will tell them that you are in office and you have to be in office that time, they will mock you and will give you an example that other people are also coming from office only and I have only this particular time slot. I have viewed 6-7 apartments and didn’t get a single call that says that the apartment is given to me. God knows what are those hidden parameters on which auctioneers and owner decide to rent out the apartment. Anyways, Finally I got one that too with the help of the contact of admin of this website. It worked in a way where I have told the person who is currently living in city quarter and will be vacating in a week’s time to send a mail to auctioneer and request her to give that apartment to me. It worked but the auctioneer asked me to deposit the advance that moment only and told me it could be possible that the apartment will be gone before the same evening. I bury my ops, work, meeting and ran to the town center to deposit the advance. There is more to it. The apartment that I deposited the advance for, I wasn’t able to see the apartment as the current tenant is currently living in the apartment. So basically I have deposited the money for an apartment I never viewed, this is how things work here. I have seen the activities on the daft(the housing website in Ireland) where the apartments are posted on low price initially and then just in matter of few hours they will remove the add from the website and will post it again with higher price say 100-200 Euros higher because of high demand. The irony is government is not doing anything to regulate the price of the house for rent and for sale. There should be some sort of regulations on the prices but I have often heard from my colleagues that government is least bothered about the housing crunch and inflated prices of property. I am sharing this post to help you plan things accordingly in terms of your salary to your expenses and the frustration you have to go through if you don’t plan in advance.

Hope to hear more opinion or we can form a group and try to do something to help make it easier for others to find the rented apartment in athlone and may be in near future represent this problem to someone who can further present this to government.

Cheers