Evidence of demand for newly-built homes with mod-cons, and assured low energy costs, is clear from even a handful of site offers in Cork in recent weeks.
There are fresh examples in the city suburbs, with four swiftly gone in one scheme sell-out, while in satellite town Carrigaline, with eight of 10 sold, and a slight price hike for the last two.
In Cork’s suburbs, four new 1,580 sq ft homes hidden away off the Blackrock Road (written about here a month ago) in a niche, walled scheme called Citadella are now pretty much booked already via agents Sherry FitzGerald.
Those four houses, off Bull’s Lane by Springmount House and Ashton Comprehensive, were priced at €525,000 for A3 rated three-storey homes, to a Victorian repro look: they matched an obvious, pent-up demand for new-builds, says Ann O’Mahony of Sherry FitzGerald. (Of course, the location helped too: 200 yards away that same week, the same agents had 90 viewers at two open-house viewings of an extended three-bed semi-d in Marina Park.)
And, the demand isn’t just in the city, as the sales in recent weeks at Kilmoney Woods (pictured), on the coastal side of Carrigaline indicates. Here, builder Dave Walsh of Rockforest Homes acquired the unfinished portion of this upmarket scheme off the Kilmoney Road, and by late summer had buyers for two almost completed homes left over from the previous builder/developer Dave Dwyer, who’d started selling back in 2007, initially getting €845,000 for the larger houses (the scheme got planning of 29 detacheds) with geothermal heating.
Since then, Dave Walsh of Rockforest went for planning permission for changes for 10 of those houses, tweaking and updating the original designs, adding limestone features and bringing the builds up to an even higher A2 BER rating, a step above the A3 levels now being hit by other builders and required by legislation.
The houses will have air-to-water heat pumps, which can be operated from smart phones anywhere in the world. New owners are being offered short courses in how to operate the new technology: perhaps they should send teenage children to spare their blushes and to ask all the right questions?
Construction started just over a month ago and the 10 large, five-bed houses (two en suites) will be ready by April, it’s expected. Joint selling agents for Kilmoney Woods (MK11) are Michael Pigott of Sherry FitzGerald O’Donovan Daly in Carrigaline, and Sam Kingston of Casey and Kingston. Mr Kingston also sold for Rockforest Homes a year ago on the city’s Boreenmanna Road at Woodbury, with 1,800 sq ft four-beds going for c€400,000.
Now, the same quality limestone look has been adapted from Woodbury for these larger 2,158 sq ft Carrigaline builds, on sites averaging 0.2 of an acre, including a 500 sq ft detached garage.
Eight have sold so far, at €450,000 each, and the last two of the ten are now priced at €475,000 with interest and viewings on-going, and activity levels high on site, as the first of the block-built houses get roofed in a rapid-fire delivery.
Build features include extra high ceilings at ground level, 150mm insulation at ground level with underfloor heating, air to water heat pump, 200 mm of pump- filled wall insulation, 400mm of attic insulation, air-tight package and windows with a u-value of 0.8, and Liscannor dry-wall bays and limestone capping. Gardens will be landscaped and drives finished in brick - again, Boreenmanna Road is a bit of a template for the look.
Purchasersso far have included some first-time buyers, relocators and - mostly - traders up, with a strong showing of cash buyers in evidence.
Location is off the Kilmoney and Mountain Road, on the far side of Carrigaline with easy access to the coast, to beaches at Ringabella, Roberts Cove, and Rocky Bay and to places like Nohoval, Oysterhaven and Kinsale.
The A2 BER is another standard being set: these 2,150 sq ft five beds should run on the whiff of a zephyr.