Fiona Murray Moved to Blackrock Co. Louth
Fiona Murray began her search to buy her first home in her native Dublin in 2018. However, the teacher found that she was being forced to look further and further outside of the city. When Fiona’s mum suggested that she look further afield to Blackrock, Co. Louth, Fiona fell for a 3-bed terraced house 10 minutes from the village and beach. After securing her mortgage for the €225,000 new build, Fiona moved into the home in 2018. Now with a 50-minute commute to her workplace in Swords, Fiona has embraced life in Blackrock and has made a lot of friends along the way.
Meet Fiona Murray Fiona is a primary school teacher originally from East Wall in Dublin who works in Swords. She spent 3 to 4 months looking for her first home in 2018. She originally started looking in East Wall in Dublin, but she was being pushed out further and further to find something within her budget. The teacher put a deposit on a duplex in Drogheda but was outbid in the process. Eventually, Fiona’s mum suggested looking in the picturesque seaside village of Blackrock as it was only a little further north.
Fiona took one look at the showhouse in Shannon Homes’ development Cnoc Na Mara in 2018 and decided that this was the one for her. Because the home was a new build, Fiona was able to avail of the Help To Buy grant to help with the mortgage for her €225,000 three-bed terraced house.
The Commute Whilst some of Fiona’s friends initially thought that she was ‘mad’ to commute from Dundalk to Dublin, the schoolteacher who works in Swords says that her current carpool commute, which takes 50 minutes, is a breeze and is shorter than some of her Dublin pals’ daily commutes. Fiona carpools with a girl from Dundalk to Dublin 5 days a week, which helps cut down on travel expenses as well as time. She pays €20 in tolls and €40 for her half of the petrol – a total of €40 per week.
“A friend of mine spends 40 minutes driving from Drogheda to Swords. I spend just 50 minutes driving from Blackrock to Swords – it’s because I’m avoiding the bottleneck at the Julianstown Road altogether,” Fiona adds.
Ms. Murray also loves the convenience of the Matthews Bus, which operates 21 services from Dundalk to Dublin every day, and the fact that there’s a late bus back to Dundalk (at 11.30pm) if you want stay on in Dublin for a night out after work.
Despite the fact that Fiona didn’t know anyone in Blackrock or Dundalk before moving here two years ago, she loves the lifestyle here and feels like she has settled in very well.
Between her interest in music, local arts and culture, and outdoor activities like yoga on Blackrock beach, and hiking, not to mention setting up a life and career coaching business in Blackrock village, Fiona has dived headfirst into life in Louth.
“Yes, I’ve definitely settled in. I’m still building up a community here but I definitely have people around me who I can count on. “Dundalk is a real music town and there are always lots of new things going on. A lot of people here are starting creative projects and are really supported by the local community. The arts industry is huge here – people like The Mary Wallopers, Sophie Coyle, TPM and places like Creative Spark. “I’ve also gotten to know loads of people here through the Culture Club in Dundalk. I’ve found that people are really friendly here and they have a lot of time for you, more so than in Dublin. I love it here! “I recently started my own business, Fiona Murray Lifecoaching. I will be operating out of a premises on Main St. Blackrock. I’m starting a course in November in advanced coaching with neuroscience and am a member of the Worldwide Association of Coaches with Neuroscience Association (WACN). Get in touch via Facebook or my website for a free 30-minute consultation call. I’d be delighted to talk to you!”
When it comes to advice for others in a similar situation thinking about making the move to buy in the Northeast, Fiona had this to say:
“Moving out of Dublin and buying a house close to the beach has opened up amazing opportunities, ones that I couldn’t have foreseen! Checking in with my values and really looking at things through a different lens can help a lot. Not being able to buy alone in Dublin started out as a real issue and one I grieved! The things I can do now since moving out have me in amazement. Yoga is a 15-minute walk from my door on the beach and I spent today hiking in the nearby mountains.
The community is very welcoming and people are always starting new projects in the local arts community. Locals really get behind people who are starting up things. It’s brilliant. Do it!”