West Living Case Studies
Donegal Case Study: Sean O'Rourke
Emigrating from Ireland to New York and creating and enjoying a good life there is a common story for thousands of Irish people.
But the boom the Irish economy has enjoyed in the past decade has allowed many to come back to Ireland to develop successful businesses here and enjoy a superior quality of life. And an increasing number of Irish people are doing so.
Sean O'Rourke's experience is one such story. Although Sean and his wife loved New York, they decided that moving back to Ireland would offer a better quality of life for their family, in a safer environment with a more relaxed approach to life, a greater sense of belonging and better community spirit.
Sean now owns a successful company, Urlar, which manufactures and supplies decorative hardwood flooring. Speaking about the move back to Donegal, Sean said "We own our own home and at a cost that would be considerably cheaper than anything similar in New York or on the East cost of Ireland. We also find that the cost of living is lower. Commuting, childcare and socialising are all less expensive than in New York or on Ireland's east coast."
"We've enjoyed several advantages including less commuting to and from work, a less hectic pace of life, more personal space and close proximity to several excellent beaches and outdoor activities and pursuits," he added.
"There are some disadvantages though, including access to health care and facilities and the distance to international airports and third level education, but the roads have improved dramatically in Co. Donegal in recent years and I use Carrickfinn airport for business purposes when I need to," he added.
"We also enjoy being closer to our families and being able to renew old acquaintances. We have a child with special needs so the support of our extended family network is extremely helpful. The smaller class sizes in schools is also an advantage and there are good facilities for childcare and crèches around the area."
All in all, Sean and his wife are happy with their move back to Co. Donegal and would certainty recommend the move to other people who also emigrated from Ireland
Donal Cannon, Sean's business partner in Urlar, lived in Dublin for many years but moved back to Donegal where he was originally from and from where his wife also hails.
Donal and his wife now find that it is easier to commute to work, less need for security, extended family network and more open spaces for their children. While he sees that there are more job opportunities on the East coast, he enjoys the less stressful commuting and the easier access to the outdoors. Golf and fishing are easily accessible in the area and Donal finds it more convenient to avail of them in Donegal than h would have in Dublin. Like Sean, Donal is glad to have moved back to Donegal, has no plans to move back to Dublin and would highly recommend the move.
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