LESS is more, more or less, at the refashioned Cork city home called Knocknagow.
Blackrock Road, Cork City €365,000
Size: 95 sq m (1,020 sq ft)
It’s back up for sale after last changing hands three years ago, but now it’s a very different proposition indeed.
Back in 2013, this primely-set city-end Blackrock Road home by Cleve Hill was a three-bed do-er upper, with side and back wings, 1,500 sq ft, a very lowly F BER, and had as a key attraction a very long back garden.
We remarked then that it was hundreds of feet long, offering gardens to enjoy for years to come, as Knocknagow came for sale guiding at €220,000: the Price Register shows it sold promptly enough in ’13, at €252,000.
Now, it’s back, but it’s unrecognisable after a top building team — KMC — has given it a substantial overhaul.
It’s massively upgraded, is bright, superbly finished and hits a B2 BER, so will be comfortable and affordable to run for decades to come. But, it’s smaller, and the garden’s been shorn.
The side annex was hived off to improve access to the back garden of Knocknagow and to a neighbouring home’s garden for a site or two; so now, on reemergence for sale this Knocknagow Mark 11 is a two-bed, two en suite 1,020 sq ft semi, in a corner setting.
And, in lieu of the original long run of garden is a bright, full-south facing paved patio, walled garden with raised beds, screening planting and side entrance, plus rear, off-street/access lane parking with just enough gravelled space beyond for a couple of small cars, or one very big one.
All’s changed within, too: the central front door with glazed arch above it opens into what’s now one large full, c 20’ wide and double aspected room with two bay windows, triple glazed, and it has a magnificent herringbone-style parquet floor for an extra touch of class.
Antique furniture will look right at home, as will contemporary pieces.
The old chimney breast has been left in situ, should a new occupant favour an integrated stove, and one would be lovely indeed in a room of this proportion.
A short central hall/passage leads to an even larger rear, south-facing kitchen/dining room in a re-worked extension with pitched roof and new slates; it has a long bank of quality gloss units and appliances, and has an interior arch at the back of the kitchen which opens to a handy, central windowless core utility space.
There’s also a ground floor guest WC, and the two bedrooms overhead each have well-finished en suite shower rooms, and high ceilings, plus there’s Stira access to an attic.
It’s likely that builder/contractor/engineer Kieran McCarthy of KMC got the job here at Knocknagow (the name’s also the title of a book by Charles Kickham) after doing another highly regarded bungalow upgrade to fine splendours for a trading-down owner very close by on the Blackrock Road just a few years ago.
A trading-down buyer is expected here too, suspects estate agent Jackie Cohalan of Cohalan Downing, who guides this fresh, new-feeling period semi at €365,000: she says it would have been guided far higher had it kept a third bedroom.
It’s close to a walk-in job now, within a walk of the city centre, and the simplest of furnishing touches will make it an individual home once more, in keeping with above-standard door ironmongery, triple glazing, tiling and flooring.
A standard has indeed been set in Knocknagow’s change of fortunes, and as luck would have it, for buyers at this level... there’s a bit of competition this very week.
Further out the Blackrock Road, the conversion of the former Ursuline Convent in Blackrock Village gets launched today, and is set to cause quite the stir among those thinking of trading down, cashing in and still living in comfort, with convenience (see Cover Story).
Now called Blackrock House, the top-drawer convent conversion sees 27 one-, two- and three-bed luxurious apartments launched with Lisneys in the heart of Blackrock, with a one-bed at €285,000, and a range of two-beds at €365,000 for a 1,159 sq ft one, up to €445,000 for a 1,389 sq ft two-bed.
You pays your money and you takes your choices.
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