Built on gloriously-set elevated ground, Knockrobin’s new lower price could see it developed into a top contemporary home, writes Tommy Barker
IN almost anyone’s book, €105,000 is a decent chunk of change. In many parts of the country you could buy a house still with €100k, but at Knockrobin, the €105,000 figure is ‘only’ the drop in asking price, for a three-bed 1980s bungalow.
Now ‘price adjusted’ to €995,000, this Knockrobin gets its sense of value from its location rather than the quality of its accommodation, even though that’s not too bad at all in any case. In fact, it’s very comfortable.
In terms of location, we’re talking comfortably-off Compass Hill, above Kinsale, a local property hot-spot in the first instance, and where €1m+ properties are not entirely rare.
Accessible Compass Hill is up there in high-end value terms along with other local favourite viewing perches like Scilly and Ardbrack. Last year alone, Kinsale recorded 10 sale property transactions of €1m+, up from four in 2018.
Just how many will there be in this locked-down year though?
The 2019 top sales included a dated home at Ardbrack called Rooska,making €2m for site value in the main, and the €1.35m paid for 3 Ard Alainn, a large new-build at Compass Hill.
One of 2019’s biggies was Ardcarrig, Compass Hill, which made €1.79m, and further up the hill, the same selling agents Engel & Volkers sold Ard na Greina, a Huf-Haus-like glass and timber-framed build done by the Da Vinci kit builders. It eventually made a reported €1.24m, after several years on the market.
Another of Kinsale’s bigger 2019 deals was of a home called Seascape at Ardbrack, which went to market in March 2018 price-guided at €2.45m by Sherry FitzGerald. It has since sold for over €2m, according to local sources, but isn’t on the Price Register.
Also showing on the Price Register at end-2019 was the very well-known Fastnet House, designed by Scott Tallon Walker for the late Greg Coughlan of Howard Holdings, arguably Kinsale’s most extravagantly specced and elaborately finished home.
Fastnet House sold back in 2013 for €3m, and the Price Register shows a transaction there once more, days before Christmas last, at €3.25m. It hadn’t been publicly on the market, and itsappearance may be an asset transfer?
Meanwhile, Sherry FitzGerald’s Johnny O’Flynn is charged with sale of this home, Knockrobin, and by now it’s just over one year on the market, having first gone up at €1.1m before St Patrick’s weekend in 2019.
It dates to the 1980s, and has been in the one family’s hands for decades, and is a perfectly fine three/four-bed home, of 1,850 sq ft, with the most glorious of views.
It sits more or less above the Trident Hotel, and while it is quite typical of its era in terms of rooms layout. Viewers to date have liked what they saw, and planned to enlarge and alter, rather than to demolish, Mr O’Flynn reveals, and he notes that an adjacent property has extended recently down into its sloping site.
Key to Knockrobin’s potential is the scope to do similar, on its very decent 0.7 acre site and gloriously-set elevated ground, or to go out in different directions, subject to planning permission, with an updated design to capitalise on views both of the inner and outerharbour, the town itself, pier, marinas. and James Fort.
Among those who previously viewed were a mix of Irish — predominantly from Cork, Dublin and elsewhere — with some interest also from further afield.
It had previously gone Sale Agreed, at an undisclosed price, but the owners have now decided to re-offer, at a sum just shy of the €1m mark.
Sherry FitzGerald’s Mr O’Flynn says the bungalow is “a family home with impeccable charm and character”.
It has three reception rooms and three bedrooms, one with en suite and a dressing room.
Previously it had been a four-bed, but bedroom number four no 4 was annexed as a dressing room with built-in wardrobes.
The door to the hall is still in place, so the room could yet revert to this sort of need if necessary?
But, it’s likely to get more than a ‘mere’ bedroom reinstated, and so next owners might create a more open-plan space, or add on, and it’s a fair bet that glazing will be updated to provide for some floor to i sliders for full-on vistas and easy patio/terraced/gardens access.
The house’s position on the south-facing slope, below the road scything up Compass Hill, means there’s scope to track the sun all day long, and as it bounces off the water beneath.
VERDICT: Good as it stands, but scope to be made a far more valuable 21st century contemporary home: just how much wall-knocking Knockrobin gets now after a cool €105k is knocked off the price will make this one to watch, coronavirus wobbles not withstanding.
Size: 172 sq m (1,850 sq ft)Bedrooms: 3/4