THERE’S a whole lotta house for your money at the well-styled semi-d called Galbally, north of Cork city at suburban Banduff, towards the back of the popular Ard na Gréine development.
Built in the late 1990s by Murnane and O’Shea, the scheme beyond the Fox and Hounds junction at Ballyvolane is close to all services and to the North Ring Road, and Galbally is probably one of the very best homes within the development, say estate agents James G Coughlan.
They guide the smart three-bed at €295,000, and say after extension and upgrades, there’s nearly too many features to list, so they’re really recommending hands-on, feet-on-the-ground viewings.
It’s got a surprising 1,625 sq ft, thanks to an attic conversion, and this top floor room “is your real ‘man cave’,” quips Jim Coughlan of this top-deck room set up for music-making and chilling.
It’s 18’ long and 15’ wide under sloping ceilings, with Veluxes to the back, while at least one of the neighbouring homes has gone a step further, with its dormer attic windows at the front.
Working downwards in Galbally, the middle floor is probably the most typical of the semi-d breed, with three bedrooms with built-ins, the master bed’s en suite with a retiled washroom in neutral hues, while the main bathroom’s probably the most traditional feature left untouched from the c 1998-build, with black and white tiling redolent of the day.
Downstairs, it’s a very different set-up now thanks to a rear and part-side extension and it’s this which has really pushed the padded envelope, sizewise.
There’s a cracking new kitchen, in solid walnut, there is also a range cooker which really looks the business, with island part-dividing the cooking and dining section.
The island has a slight raised lip section at the back, which helps give a bit of visual screening from the dining table for anything left on worktops: it’s a neat add-on for open plan living, for those who can’t relax in front of stacked plates and awaiting wash-ups.
The relatively open kitchen/dining has a white tiled floor, sliding patio doors, and dotted overhead are several Velux windows for maximising light into this key, core area.
The extra depth of the add-on space means the former ‘back room’ is now that bit more distanced from light and glazing, although here, the owners seem to have decided to work with that possible demerit, instead choosing to highlight the ‘cosy’ nature of the enclosed space by creating a sort of TV den, simply by delineating the dividing wall sections in a warm red paint.
The effect is to add a womb feel to the room within; it’s very effective.
There’s no doors either to divide this space, so it’s easy to walk through from back hall to dining table for a bit of circulation.
Separately, then, there’s an oak floored front reception room with multi-fuel stove in a fire surround, with double, part-glazed doors to the hall, also floored in oak, and backing it all up is a utility room (also with units in walnut) and guest WC.
Heating’s gas fired and windows are all double glazed, the BER’s a respectable C1, the house has an alarm, and there’s a printed and glossy concrete front drive for off-street parking plus a rear patio is also in the same dark concrete with a glossy sheen.
The back garden’s a bit of a sun-trap with a south-west aspect, notes Jim Coughlan, adding that there’s also a useful, block-built storage shed to the back, with an extra decked area for sitting out.
The vendors are moving to take on another project near Glanmire, according to Mr Couhglan “as they’ve practically nothing left to do here anymore”.
Location-wise, Ard na Gréine’s very convenient thanks to the North Ring Road, and at the guide of €295,000, home-hunters would be hard pressed to get an equivalent to this size and quality anywhere off the South Ring Road.
The Price Register shows recent Ard na Gréine sales of more standard semis at €250,000 and €262,000, and while one shows up at €106,00, the Register gives the caveat that it wasn’t a full market value transaction.
VERDICT: Chock-full of extra touches and space aplenty
Banduff, Cork city
Size: 151 sq m (1,625 sq ft)
Bedrooms: 3 + attic
Best feature: Lots of extra touches and spacious
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