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Shocked neighbours pay tribute to tragic Ardshanavooley woman

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By Sean Moriarty

Shocked neighbours have this morning paid tribute to their neighbour who was found dead in her home yesterday afternoon (Monday) in unexplained circumstances.

MEDIA: Cllr Donal Grady speaks to RTE News this morning (Tuesday).

SHOCK: Neighbours and brothers Donal and Sean Grady have expressed shock at the news.

ATTENTION: RTÉ and Virgin Media cameramen filming Garda forensic officers entering the home of Miriam Burns this morning (Tuesday).

The body of Miriam Burns - described as "such a lovely bubbly person" - was discovered at her home in Ardshanavooley at around lunchtime.

A technical examination of the scene was carried out by Garda Forensic experts and Mrs Burns remains were later brought to University Hospital Kerry (UHK) where the cause of death is expected to be determined. The State Pathologist’s Office was also informed.

A second team of Garda Forensic Officers arrived at the scene shortly before 10am this morning (Tuesday) and Killarney Gardai have also started door-to-door enquires in the estate.

The Killarney Advertiser understands that a family member in Australia was trying to make contact with Miriam and when they were unable to get a response they alerted a neighbour who made the discovery.

The devastating news sent shockwaves through the quiet estate, the whole town and beyond. Miriam was a familiar face in Killarney as she cycled everywhere on her daily rounds.

TRIBUTE

Former mayor Sean Grady paid tribute to his neighbour.

“We are in total shock that such a vibrant woman has been taken from us,” he told the Killarney Advertiser. “She was such a gracious lady and the whole community extends its dearest sympathies to her family and all associated with her. This cloud won't lift over Killarney for a very long time.”

His brother Donal was one of the first people to move into the Ardshanavooley estate in 1972.

“She is here since 1973 or 1974,” he told the Killarney Advertiser. “Miriam will be sorely missed, a lady who was smiling the whole time, she was everybody’s friend. She looked after everyone and if they were having a bad day she would cheer them up."

One neighbour who did not wish to be named said: “She was a lady, a lovely sociable person, a very good neighbour, private in her own way but a very good person. It is a huge shock, such an outgoing person, she was always dressed well, and off around town on her bicycle. We don’t need this – it is very sad.”

Another neighbour added: “It is an awful shock, she was such a lovely bubbly person. This is very hard for the neighbourhood.”

The incident has also attracted widespread media attention, with RTÉ, Virgin Media and the Irish Independent on the scene.

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Housing Will Never Be The Same

Last week I wrote about the pathetic investment options out there for Irish investors. Despite high ongoing fees (mortgage, maintenance, insurance etc.) and the actual headache of being a landlord, […]

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Last week I wrote about the pathetic investment options out there for Irish investors.

Despite high ongoing fees (mortgage, maintenance, insurance etc.) and the actual headache of being a landlord, it’s easy to see why real estate functioned as the de facto investment portfolio for an entire generation.

Wealth creation was a rinse-and-repeat function where couples put money away until they had enough for the ‘next house’. As a result, we have an economy where 70% of household wealth is tied up in real estate.

Driven by the profits it created, Ireland became obsessed with owning real estate.

But real estate as an investment won’t be nearly as successful for our generation. (If you are able to get a house, that is)

All you have to do is look at the anecdotal evidence all around us to confirm this.

My parents bought the house they currently live in for 30k (pounds) 35 years ago. The house is now worth roughly 450k.

I typically despise these back-of-the-envelope calculations when It comes to property, given the endless variables and ongoing costs involved, but bear with me.

That’s a gross return of 15 times the original value. Now there are upgrades, a change in currency and other adjustments to consider here, so for argument’s sake, let’s call it 10X.

To achieve the same level of growth over the next 35 years, you would be left paying 4,500,000 euros for what is a pretty modest house.

Sure, we will still see property prices increase over time, but the rate of growth won’t be anywhere near as meaningful for one simple reason.

Interest rates.

Artificial Growth

Over the last 30 years, real economic growth has been stagnant, yet Ireland has experienced enviable nominal growth.

How did we manage it?

We created imaginary wealth.

We pushed interest rates lower and lower to stimulate economic growth.

And it worked.

After all, if you make 100k/year you can probably afford a 400k mortgage at 4%. At 2%, with the same 100k/year salary you can now take on 600k in debt.

So, were we getting richer, or was the debt just easier to afford?

Where do we go from here?

We have now squeezed interest rates as low as they can go.

The house price appreciation we have seen was justifiable because the mortgage rates on housing continued to fall in recent decades. This allowed people to take on more debt without severely impacting their ability to repay that debt.

If we go back to my parents, they were paying 14% on their mortgage. Mortgage rates are currently between 2 to 3%.

A relentless drop in interest rates gave way to higher and higher prices for houses, but interest rates are now on the floor.

The juice has been squeezed.

In fact, the trend has started to reverse, with rates expected to rise 1.5% in the first half of 2023

Be mindful that the same credit expansion cannot happen again.

How the next generation thinks about their investment options has to change.

Banks offering 0% returns for the use of your money and a housing ladder you can’t get on are not your only two options.

If you need help creating your own investment portfolio, just reach out to me at mike@theislandinvestor or simply scan the QR code above.

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Biddies performance celebrates St Brigid

Two local Biddies groups performed at Muckross House as part of St Brigid’s Day celebrations in aid of Kerry Parents and Friends Association. The Killarney Parents and Friends Biddy Group – formerly […]

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Two local Biddies groups performed at Muckross House as part of St Brigid’s Day celebrations in aid of Kerry Parents and Friends Association.

The Killarney Parents and Friends Biddy Group – formerly known as the Beaufort Biddy Group – and Kilgobnet Biddies came together for the event.

The tradition of the Biddies is one of the oldest and most colourful customs in Ireland, a blend of pagan and Christian pageantry, held on February 1 each year, heralding the beginning of springtime and honouring St Bríd the patron saint of the farming community.

Master traditional craftsman, Pat Broderick, at Muckross House, was also part of St Brigid’s Day celebrations, making a St Brigid’s Cross as part of the traditions.

 

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