Kelly Fincham: Ireland apartments and meals down in price, wine still a rip-off: Click here

The cost of living in Ireland has dropped by the steepest amount in over 75 years, year on year, according to new statistics from the Central Statistics Office there, which were released on Friday. Experts say the slide will continue.

It is all good news for visitors to Ireland who will find prices sharply lower than in recent years.

Reductions in mortgage interest repayments are the most dramatic. Home loan repayments have dropped by a whopping 42 percent in the last year.

Someone paying off a $400,000 mortgage has seen their payments drop from $2,000 a month last September to $1,400.

There have now been seven successive falls in interest rates in the past year, a fact that has greatly offset the new tax charges that the Irish government has imposed

Rents are down 16 percent, furniture down 6 percent, food down 2.5 percent and clothes are down a total of 12 percent.

The price of housing has also dropped dramatically with some prices slashed in half.

A leading hotel this week was sold for one third the price it went for just two years ago. Moyglare Manor in Maynooth, County Kildare, which has hosted guests such as Robert Redford and Hillary Clinton, was sold for €3.3m ($4.6m) to a group of 10 Irish investors, €6.7m ($9.4) less than the original asking price.

In May alone, prices of goods and services in Ireland dropped sharply. Electricity dropped by 10 percent in the month, and gas was down 11 percent.

Medical costs such as the price of doctor’s visits have also dropped significantly as the Irish people struggle to cope with the huge rise in the number of unemployed – now over 400,000.

One of the few costs still rising are home and car insurance, which has gone up about 12 percent over the past year.

On the down side, the emergency budgets have pushed the tax bill for a couple earning a combined $90,000 a year by $5,000.

Pay cuts of 10 percent on average have also been implemented in much of the private sector. There are now 402,100 on the unemployment rolls, a figure expected to surpass 500,000 by the end of the year.