Cheap Irish Houses? Well, close enough anyway

Cheap Irish Houses? Well, close enough anyway
Pictures: Niamh Whitty

The programme Cheap Irish Houses is a welcome and well-timed addition to the canon of Irish property-related TV shows — not everyone has makeover budgets of a few hundred grand to lash into a house post-purchase, or when ready for a major upgrade and extension.

With the first two of six episodes now aired featuring co-presenters Maggie Molloy (who started the theme and has 62,000 Instagram followers for her usually ramshackle finds) and Cork engineer/builder Kieran McCarthy of KMC Homes, it’s a bit of a tonic to see possible homes unearthed, from as low as last week’s €62,000. And, there are even cheaper homes out there too.

Not quite in that bargain-basement league, but recently invested in and ready to go, is this compact Kilbrennan cottage on a half an acre.

Apart from the broadly affordable price tag of €180,000 for a walk-in proposition, a key feature is the fact the location is not out in the back of beyond, or up a miles’ long unsurfaced track.

Kilbrennan’s close to Cloughduv and Crookstown, a 20 minute spin west of Cork city, and handy for those working at major employers such as EMC at Ovens.

It’s listed for sale with Ballincollig-based John O’Mahony of OM2 auctioneers, selling for a man who only bought it three of four years ago as a project and who nudged it up to the standard seen here now.

It had been on the market back in 2015 with a price guide of €145,000 and back then it had a sand area, some decking, and an outdoor hot tub plus a stables to its credit.

Cheap Irish Houses? Well, close enough anyway

The Price Register shows this had sold by 2017, for a recorded €130,000, and while it’s €50,000 grand more now, it’s a more updated and attractive proposition all around, says Mr O’Mahony, who describes it as “delighful.”

The sand arena to the front of the grounds, for horse training and jumps, is now lawned, but could be re-instated, and the stables and outhouses are handy for horses, hobbies and hobby horses, and just plain old necessary ‘storage.’

As a house, it’s not very large at c 850 sq ft, about the size of a good two-bed city or Ballincollig apartment and probably in the same price bracket too.

Apart from the sole bedroom and upgraded bathroom, and the bright porch entrance, realIy it only has an open plan kitchen/living/dining room, but it’s smart and it feels a bit airier thanks to a high, vaulted wood-paneled and varnished ceiling.

The double aspect room has a red deal floor, a brick fireplace with a solid fuel stove and the chimney up on the slate roof also is in red brick.

There’s a gloss Cook& Lewis kitchen with glossy splashback metro-style tiles in a short run, with another unit section and tall fridge on the other side of a window.

The bedroom in this single storey home, like the main living section, also is high ceilinged, with French doors out to a gravelled sit-out area to the front of the property, which previously had decking between the double doors and the sun-room/porch entrance.

Cheap Irish Houses? Well, close enough anyway

Selling agent John O’Mahony (who sold this Kilbrennan cottage to its current owner while working with O’Mahony Walsh, before opening up OM2) comments that it’s been “tastefully refurbished and modernised, to an exceptional standard.

Itretains the integrity of the original design and character of the property by enhancing many of the original features.”

Current lockdown restrictions mean a BER assessor has yet to visit, but back in 2015 when last for sale, it registered as an E.

The stables section has two loose boxes and a tack room, there’s a patio/sitting out/al fresco dining section, and a half acre in all to disport on, with a similar era and similar sized neighbouring small cottage visible across the road, beyond the long graveled approach driveway.

It’s not isolated, is only a mile and half to Cloughduv village for local services, as well as being close the Crookstown with a bus serving those communities just off the main N22 Cork-Macroom/Kerry road.

Putting it to market just prior to this Bank Holiday Weekend, John O’Mahony sums it up as “a very comfortable, and affordable property, which is ready to move into at a very reasonable price.”

Cheap Irish Houses? Well, close enough anyway

VERDICT

Affordable indeed right now, and eminently extendable in time to come.

Cloughduv/Crookstown

€180,000

Size: 80 sq m (855 sq ft)

Bedrooms: 1

Bathrooms: 1

BER: Pending

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