herald

Monday 29 May 2017

'It's a crazy situation, I always found myself in tears'

Laura Ryan and fiance Pedro da Silva celebrate their daughter Ava’s birthday
Laura Ryan and fiance Pedro da Silva celebrate their daughter Ava’s birthday

A mother-of-two was forced to live in her parents' house while her fiance worked and lived in the North, owing to the housing crisis in the capital.

Like many young couples, the prospect of renting in Dublin just wasn't possible for Laura Ryan and Pedro da Silva.

The 27-year-old from Ratoath said she had no choice but to remain in her parents' house while taking care of her young children.

"Up until January, I was living at home with my 20-month-old daughter, but when my second born came I could clearly see how packed my parents' house was getting," she said.

"It was clear we needed somewhere else to live, but we found it impossible to find an affordable place to rent in Dublin or even near my parents' home."

According to the latest census figures, the highest growth in rent was in Dublin City which increased by almost 30pc since 2011.

Rises in excess of 20pc were also recorded in Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown (26.2pc), Fingal (22.8pc), South Dublin (22.7pc) and Kildare (20.3pc).

For nearly 15 months, Laura took care of her children while her fiance, from Clonsilla, worked and lived in Belfast.

"Being pregnant, I found it very different to be away from Pedro.

"He came up to us during the weekends, but it was still not enough. I think it was just how amazing he was around our children that kept me going. When he would leave I always found myself in tears."

Pedro (28) has since found work as a mechanical design engineer in Dundalk, which made things a lot easier for the couple. However, finding a suitable place to live was not straight-forward.

"The prices were just so excessive in Dublin and in Ratoath apartments were going for €1,200," she said.

Crazy

"We couldn't get a place nearby and then started looking in Cavan. My mam thought I was crazy looking to move away so far, but we really just wanted a proper place where we could raise a family.

"Originally, we wanted to buy a house, but it is just not possible at the moment.

"We eventually came across a four-bedroom house in Cavan going for €700 per month.

"Although it's not in an ideal location, with ­Pedro having to drive an hour-and-a-half to work each day, it's the only suitable place we could find.

"How long will it take before I can buy a house? It's a very crazy situation."

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