74.7% of vacant commercial properties in Leitrim have been vacant for over three years

Leitrim Observer reporter

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Leitrim Observer reporter

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74.7% of vacant commercial properties in Leitrim have been vacant for over three years

74.7% of the vacant commercial address points in Leitrim have been empty empty for over three years.

Leitrim’s commercial vacancy rate stood at 15.6% in Q4 2017, representing a drop of 0.8% compared to the same period in 2016, according to the latest GeoDirectory Geoview Commercial Vacancy Report. The research reveals that 74.7% of the vacant commercial address points in Leitrim have been empty empty for over three years.

The research finds:

- 74.7% of Leitrim’s vacant commercial addresses have been vacant for three years or longer
- Carrick-on-Shannon recorded a commercial vacancy rate of 15.2%, lower than the county average of 15.6%
- Sligo had the highest commercial vacancy rate in the country at 18.7%, while Kerry recorded the lowest vacancy rate at 10.5%

Overall, the national commercial vacancy rate in Ireland dropped slightly from 13.5% in Q4 2016 to 13.3% in Q4 2017.

Commercial activity remains concentrated on the East coast of Ireland, with the Greater Dublin Area accounting for 33.2% of the overall national stock. This is in stark contrast to Connacht and Ulster, with these provinces only accounting for 13.7% and 7.8% of the national stock respectively.

In Dublin, the commercial vacancy rate fell to 12.4%, a drop of 1.3pp compared to last year, with 16 of the 22 postal districts recording a vacancy rate below the national average of 13.3%. Dublin 2, experienced a drop of 6.4pp, the most significant reduction in the city. Dublin 8, at 16.7%, has the highest commercial vacancy rate of all the Dublin postal districts.

Outside of the capital, there is evidence that the economic recovery is beginning to spread, albeit slowly, beyond the Greater Dublin Area. Modest reductions were recorded in Leitrim (-0.8pp), Donegal (-0.5pp), Limerick (-0.3pp), Waterford (-0.3pp) and Mayo (-0.3pp).

Despite evidence of progress, the report highlights a continued imbalance between Dublin and the rest of the country, as commercial vacancy rates remain stubbornly high outside the capital. In total, GeoDirectory data shows that 15 counties registered vacancy rates higher than the national average in Q4 2017, unchanged from twelve months ago. Sligo, at 18.7%, was the county with the highest vacancy rate, followed by Galway (16.2%), Leitrim (15.6%) Mayo (15.3%) and Longford (15.1%). At the other end of the scale, Kerry (10.5%), Meath (10.7%) and Wexford (10.8%) recorded the lowest vacancy rates.

At a provincial level, Leinster, excluding Dublin, (12.6%) and Munster (13.0%) had a vacancy rate below the national average of 13.3%, while Ulster (14.0%) and Connacht (16.1%) were higher. 

Long-Term Commercial Vacancy Rates

According to GeoDirectory data, 19,038 commercial units in Ireland have been vacant for three or more years. This represents 67.8% of the overall national commercial vacant stock of 28,091. Monaghan, at 78.5%, had the highest proportion of long term commercial vacancies in the State, followed by Laois (76.5%), Limerick (76.0%) and Clare (75.6%). At the other end of the spectrum, Galway (60.5%), Dublin (61.5%) and Westmeath (62.2%) recorded the lowest rates.

In the capital, Dublin 20, at 19.2%, was the Dublin postal district with the lowest long-term vacancy rate, while Dublin 13 recorded the highest rate at 78.2%.

Town Commercial Vacancy Rates

GeoDirectory has conducted an analysis of the commercial vacancy rates in 102 locations, including 80 towns across the four provinces plus 22 Dublin postal districts.

In Leitrim, Carrick-on-Shannon recorded a commercial vacancy rate of 15.2%.

Nationally, Ballybofey in Co. Donegal, at 28.8%, remains the town with the highest commercial vacancy rate in the country. Despite experiencing a drop of 3.7pp on the same period last year, Edenderry in Co. Offaly recorded the second highest vacancy rate (27.3%), followed by Edgeworthstown, Co. Longford (26.7%), Kilrush, Co. Clare (24.7%) and Ballina, Co. Mayo (23.8%). Of the 80 towns analysed, Greystones, Co. Wicklow (5.7%), Maynooth, Co. Kildare (7.4%) and Gorey, Co. Wexford (8.5%) posted the lowest commercial vacancy rates in the country.