Fun Ideas for the 4th!



{Kitchen pics and sources here} I got an e-mail a few weeks ago from the editor of Women’s Day magazine.  It was so sweet.  She was letting me know that they had featured my 4th of July Pretzel Hugs.  She told me that they loved my blog and if I had any other great recipes […]

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Traffic to from the UK up 43% following Brexit vote


Last week’s Brexit result has left many people wondering what impact it will have on the property market. can report, however, that in the short term it has led to an increased number of views from potential purchasers in the UK.

Last weekend following the Brexit result, traffic to from the UK was up by more than 43 per cent on previous weekends with more than 46,700 page views across all platforms.

This includes a 35.2 per cent increase in the level of traffic from desktop users and an 8.7 per cent increase from users of the Android and iOS apps.

That is a clear indicator that people in the UK are now monitoring the UK market closer than before and it’s a trend we expect to see continue in the weeks and months ahead despite the fall in the value of sterling.


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Be More Productive! Create a Visual To-Do List.



I’m all about lists.  And productivity.  And finding practical systems that work well for me.  I’m also all about finding that perfect pair of great fitting jeans. But that’s a post for another day. 🙂 In my last post I shared our current summer to-do list.  My kids dictate this beloved list every summer and […]

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Change of mind? 10 reasons to choose chartered surveying

Ireland is seriously lacking in chartered surveyors, a dearth of which could have a huge impact on the construction industry over the next four years. That’s according to recent research carried out by the Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland (SCSI) and the Association of Consulting Engineers of Ireland (ACEI), who cite the cause as a lack of enrolment on to surveying courses.
However with the property market set to grow, the research highlights the opportunities that exist for students who show a preference for Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) courses.
Students, particularly females, with an interest in these courses are therefore being urged to put a construction-related programme on their CAO change of mind forms, due in this Friday. With that in mind, we have put together ten reasons why a career in surveying could be the one for you.

1. Fewer graduates mean more jobs

Recent findings indicate that there will be a substantial deficit of surveyors in the construction and property industry to meet the predicted future demand for the construction sector in Ireland. This is good news for students who take up surveying. They are almost guaranteed a job at the end of their four-year degree.

2. Fewer graduates also mean better starting salaries

Let’s face it, money is an important factor when choosing a career and with rising rents and cost of living, graduates want to know that they will make a nice wage at the end of their four-year degree. If people are prepared to work hard, employees will be rewarded.

3. Opportunities to travel

Travel is always alluring, especially to young people and chartered surveying graduates can have their pick of countries to work in, according to Aine Myler, Director of Operations at SCSI. She says graduates who have achieved their chartership have taken up jobs in their droves in other jurisdictions. “Many of our surveyors have travelled to the Middle East, Canada and Australia because (the charter) is automatically recognised as an accreditation and they are able to get jobs on some very exciting projects straight away.”

4. Lots of jobs available at home too

Research shows that, based on a conservative forecast of economic growth up to December 2019 (3 per cent growth per annum), over 2,000 new jobs are expected to be created across the surveying profession. Looking at current student enrolments on surveying courses, there will only be enough Irish graduates to fill half of those positions.

5. Ability to move around sectors

There’s lots of scope to move around sectors. There is also the opportunity to expand your skill base because it’s such a wide, diverse profession. “A lot of people who start off in the quantity surveying side of the house go in to project management after a period of time. Transference of skills and qualifications are actually quite good and varied,” Myler says.

6. There are lots of exciting jobs within the industry

Geomatics is one of the most in-demand technical skills in the world. Geomatics surveyors map, measure and interpret the world and the geographical information they provide helps governments, businesses and organisations make informed decisions.
There is also another side to it. Certain scenes in James Bond’s Casino Royale were created by geometrics surveyors who make computer-generated 3D images.

7. Opportunities to work with large multi-national companies

With the recovery in the property market, international companies have bought large tranches of land in Ireland and some are looking to stay and develop a real business model. Myler says graduates like the fact they are now working for global companies as that provides them with an opportunity to travel. It could also see them working in the head offices of tech giants like Google and Facebook as facilities managers.

8. Every day is different and requires good people skills

Not many people like to be chained to a desk and with surveying there are plenty of opportunities to get out and about. For example, property roles such as residential and commercial estate agency provide a lot of time outside the office. “There is a need for good soft skills and people skills too and it’s not all cerebral,” Myler says.

9. Great opportunities for career progression

There is a shortage in all areas including quantity surveying, geomatics, property, building surveying, asset management and valuations – hence there are fantastic opportunities. Career progression can take surveyors in many directions and they can work in many sectors.

10. It’s a great career for women

Surveying has often been seen as a male-dominated industry but Myler insists it’s a great career for a woman. “Sometimes people feel there is a need for physical strength in surveying but there isn’t. Women tend to be better people persons and the skills they offer are absolutely applicable to this range of opportunities.”

For more information, please visit the Society of Chartered Surveyors website at to learn about the variety of accredited courses on offer.

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EBS offers new cash-back offer on its mortgages


EBS is the latest financial institution in the Irish market to introduce a cash-back offer on its mortgage products.

Since last week customers who draw down a new mortgage with the lender will receive 2% back in cash.

This would mean that a typical customer borrowing €200,000 would receive €4,000.

However, the window on the offer is relatively tight, as it expires at the end of October.

EBS chief executive Des Fitzgerald said its research has shown that “some customers, especially first-time buyers, have a strong appetite for cash offers, but still want to avail of very competitive mortgage interest rates”.

The 2% cash back is available to customers taking out fixed or variable mortgages on private homes, including first-time buyers and customers moving to a new home.

The move follows similar 2% cash back offers from both Bank of Ireland and Permanent TSB.

Bank of Ireland’s offer, which started in June of last year, runs until the end of September.

Meanwhile, PTSB’s cash-back offer – launched in January – applies to mortgages approved by the end of this month.

Cash-back offers such as these are generally aimed at customers who need to cover costs related to house purchases – such as stamp duty, as well as legal and valuation fees.

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Summer to-do list



We’ve been working hard around here lately.  Really hard. In fact, we’ve been working so hard that we had to change our regular daily checklist… to something a little more structured that fit our higher level of determination and hard work.  I know.. it’s intense.  I’m worried you might pass out from exhaustion just reading […]

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Lisney’s view on the impact of Brexit on the Irish property market


People are still getting their heads around the possible impact on Ireland in relation to Britain’s impending exit from the European Union.

It is unclear as yet what impact it will have on the property market but estate agents Lisney have attempted to clarify the matter after issuing a press release titled ‘How will Brexit impact on the Irish property market?’

It reads as follows:

“The answer is that nobody knows and it will take a number of years for the full effects to materialise.  However, in the shorter-term, the uncertainty created by the vote is likely to have an impact upon the Irish economy and in turn the Irish property market in terms of a ‘wait and see’ approach.

“On the positive side, the office occupational market could experience an increase in demand from international companies requiring a foothold in the EU.  As is well known, Ireland ranks very highly in attracting such companies and given that competition from the UK will be reduced, added to the fact that we will be the only English speaking country remaining in the EU, our attractiveness will grow.  This will have ramifications for the office market and the challenge will be to have an adequate supply of office space available over the coming years, particularly in Dublin city centre.  In spite of this, we don’t expect a mass influx of companies and any increase in demand for space will be on a gradual basis.

“Linked to this will be improving the supply of housing.  FDI companies by their nature employ a large number of foreign staff and this could put even more pressure on the very constrained housing market.  Such foreign workers generally like to live in close proximity of their work, so increasing apartment building in the city centre will be important.  There could be some key opportunities here for investors in building blocks of apartments but action will be required sooner rather than later.

“The construction industry is reaching capacity, particularly in Dublin. A cooling of the construction boom in the UK, which we now expect, may bring some capacity to Ireland and should help ease concerns about construction cost inflation.

“In terms of the investment market, funds and private investors from the UK have only made up a small proportion of those buying properties in recent years.  Hammerson and Aviva are the most notable.  However, Irish investors have always been active in the UK investment market and Brexit may mean that they will consider investing more domestically rather than the UK in the future.  Investment is a confidence business. Uncertainty hammers confidence and we expect a considerably quieter second half of the year in 2016 compared to the last two years.  Astute investors will find opportunity in that.

“On the more negative side, the effect on the Irish economy is at the forefront.  Depending on the trade deal reached between the EU/Ireland and the UK, the degree to which Irish exports will be affected will vary.  The UK is Ireland’s second largest trading partner with 17% of our exports going to there.  Even in the short-term a weakening in Sterling is bad news for Irish exporters due to competitiveness.  But in the longer-term, if Irish exports to the UK fall considerably, this could have a major effect on Irish economic growth and jobs.  In turn, this impacts on demand for both residential and commercial property.  Industrial and distribution occupiers in Ireland are very much linked to and through the UK.  Changes here are inevitable with some potential for greater emphasis on air freight and direct access to continental ports.

“The really worrying issue is the larger destabilising effect this has on Europe as a unified continent which has been a rock on which our economy is based for over 40 years.

“The property market will adapt and Lisney will work to help our clients make the best property decisions. This is something we have been doing since long before the EU began.”

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