The marked shortage of good investment opportunities is expected to drive additional demand for a mixed-use Cork property mix which is already generating over €400,000 in income, with further scope for growth.
Offered this week is the Watersedge investment in Midleton, East Cork, developed as an alternative new commercial street, with apartments, in the early 2000s, on a scenic water-aspected site a few hundred metres from the towns’ Main St.
Listed this week with agents Lisney with a €5.5m guide is the Watersedge investment, with 36 apartments which are let and generating €324,000 pa, while the principal commercial anchor — a McDonald’s restaurant, with 19 years left on a 35-year lease since 2004 — has a rental income of just under €80,000 pa. The lease contains no break options.
The sale includes 15 acres of undeveloped land, now zoned ‘open space’ and which had a previous planning grant (2009) for 257 residential units, which has now lapsed and some of which was the topic of Town Council zoning/use debates after Government guidelines altered its flood risk status about a decade ago, with zoning changed from town development to open space.
The mixed-use scheme, done by local developers Heritage Developments on a former 30-acre worsted mill site by the Owencurra river which incorporated flood channels was reported back in 2003 as a €40m development, is within a few minutes’ walk of Main St and adjoins the Midleton Enterprise and Business Park, has bridge access on the town side, and adjoins both a Lidl and an Aldi, which do not form part of the investment offer.
Agents Margaret Kelleher and David McCarthy of Lisney say there is “significant reversionary potential and asset management opportunity given the vacant commercial elements”, and they say the 36 apartments (all, bar the show units, are let and have C3-B3 BERs) have an ERV of €411,000.
“There’s a significant shortage of investment opportunities in the market, particularly with such ‘value-add’ potential, both in the Cork area and in the wider market,” says Ms Kelleher, anticipating good interest from a cross-section of investors, both local and from further afield, given its current and potential income.
At the current rents, the yield shows at 6.6%, but once the show apartment units are let and the rents adjusted across the 36 two and three-bed apartments for RPZ increases, the NIY return rises to 8.1%, and there is further incomes scope from letting the other commercial/retail units in the blocks, most of which are in shell state.
The mix across the four buildings includes extensive car parking, and the ‘residual lands’ of 15.6 acres which are currently zoned ‘open space’ and which previously had planning for 257 residential units in 10 blocks, ranging in height from two storeys to six, with one storey setback level, plus retail unit and creche.
The buildings are Riverside Mall, a three-storey commercial building with McDonald's Restaurants on the ground floor with the floors above in shell condition, with large open plan spaces (one was earmarked for an ethnic restaurant) suitable for a variety of uses.
The four-storey Watersedge building contains two previously occupied retail units at ground, with eight two-bed apartments included in the second and third floors (the first floor is excluded from the sale). Next, Mogeesha House is a four-storey mixed-use building with six vacant commercial units at ground floor in shell condition, suitable for amalgamation and above are 18 apartments — six three-beds and 12 two-beds.
Separately, the four-storey Enterprise House is also mixed-use, with Aldi on the ground floor (excluded from the sale), with first-floor offices and with 10 two-bed apartments on the second and third floors, with lift access to the development’s upper-level units.
In addition, there is a further commercial unit of c20,000 sq ft within the car park building, currently in shell condition, comprising of retail units and upper floor offices, all vacant.