Assets probe Limerick councillor calls for permanent CAB presence to investigate property deals in Rathkeale
Cllr Stephen Keary said he was aware of numerous properties being bought for cash for way above market value
June 04 2021 03:20 PM
A Limerick councillor is calling for a permanent CAB presence to investigate the buying and selling of properties in Rathkeale.
Cllr Stephen Keary raised the issue of properties being bought for “three of four times” their value at a recent meeting of the Adare-Rathkeale Joint Police Committee meeting.
Cllr Keary said he was aware of numerous properties being bought for cash for way above market value.
Speaking to sundayworld.com, Cllr Keary said there was “nothing new about this” as it had been has going on for years.
“Exorbitant prices are being paid for properties, way above the normal value they would be in any other small town across the country,” he said.
“They seem to be paying multiples – three of four times the value, for properties in Rathkeale.
“I counted the number of properties that have that changed hands in the last 25 to 30 years, and I estimate that 266 houses have been sold, and this is just in one small town.
“I’d say the majority of properties that are being conveyed in Rathkeale are not being registered with Land Registry. In the last ten years, if you buy or sell a property it has to registered.
“But that’s not happening.
“They’re buying and selling them and whoever the solicitors are who are conveying those properties are not doing their due diligence. There are a lot of irregularities here..”
Cllr Keary claimed that in some cases there was a certain level of intimidation involve in trying to get people to sell their properties.
“When someone passes away, they’ll be around the same day, knocking on the door, and asking the owner are they selling?
“And when the properties are bought they’re usually boarded up and they later apply for planning permission. Then they demolish them and rebuild a new property on the site. The evidence is there on the ground because it’s been going on for years.”
Cllr Keary welcomed CAB’s interest in the issue and said they were “quite active in Rathkeale.”
“But I’d like to see them open an office here in Rathkeale because there’s a lot of work to be done,” he added.
“That probably won’t happen but I’d like to see a permanent CAB presence, maybe based Limerick in a central garda station where one or two officers could work on a full time basis.
“When I raised this issue at the JPC a couple of weeks ago, I was happy that CAB is taking an interest in doing what has to be done. But I feel we need more manpower because this is a unique situation.”
Cllr Keary added that he intends to raise the issue again at the next full meeting of the council, in July.