Big value dreams on the Cavan lakes
Get a six-bed home for the price of a Dublin semi
What can you buy in Dublin these days for €350,000? A look at the leading property portals says you can pick up a three-bed former Corporation terrace in Beaumont or you could have a three-bed 1970s semi in Blanchardstown. If you wanted to be centrally located, then there's the option of acquiring a two-bedroom apartment in Townsend Street in Dublin 2.
An example of the disparity that has built up between city and rural property values is the fact that, for the same price tag, you could instead have a six-bedroom double-fronted country house of 3,657 sq ft - more than three times the size of an average city semi - on more than an acre of land just over an hour's drive from the capital.
That's the price being asked for Marden House at Carnalynch in Bailieborough, Co Cavan.
At the height of the Celtic Tiger, priced-out commuters were beginning to buy up property in the Cavan towns of Virginia, Ballyjamesduff and Bailieborough in search of far more house for less money. Cavan was among the cheapest of Ireland's counties and still is. Then the crash came, the commuters disappeared and Cavan's property market was hit hard.
But today, as city prices rise again, the commuters are returning. Cavan prices have started to rise fast from the bottom. According to How Much Is Your House Worth? 2017, the Irish Independent's guide to home prices nationally (available online at independent.ie), it showed that Cavan prices have increased by a quarter in the 12 months to January - the fastest increasing prices in Ireland. This came on top of a 19pc increase the previous year.
Local agents are suggesting the county will see its property add another 15pc this year on the back of the fact that it costs an estimated €150,000 to build a semi in Cavan. But, at present, the average price of such a home is still just €110,000.
With a population of around 4,000, Bailieborough is the second largest town in Cavan. Located on the Dublin side of the county's border, it is close to the M3 motorway and on the meeting point of the R165, R191 and the R178. The town has a secondary school, a leisure centre with a gym, a swimming pool and a Tesco.
It is renowned for its lakes and there are no less than four within a 5km radius of the town. Among them is Bailieborough Lough, known as the 'town lake', which is located in Bailieborough itself, and the Castle Lake just on the outside of town. Both are popular with anglers and hold good stocks of pike, bream and perch. Marden House was constructed in 2004 off the Drumacarra Road at Carnalynch, a mile and a half out of town on the Virginia Road. It was bought by a Dublin family seeking to maximise on the value to be had in the area.
Entered via an insulating porch, the hall has an oak floor and a solid mahogany staircase. The sitting room is lit by two windows and includes a marble fireplace with a mahogany surround. The living room has a cast-iron fireplace with a marble surround, this one with a coal-effect gas fire. Double doors lead through to the kitchen, which has maple wall and floor units, a granite work top and a porcelain tiled floor.
There's a sunroom with an oak floor and a pine-panelled ceiling, and a conservatory also with a solid oak floor and a set of French double doors to the garden. The glaze is double and argon filled. Also off the kitchen is a utility room and the guest wc.
The house has six bedrooms, one of which is located downstairs. Two of these have ensuite facilities. The master bedroom comes with two windows, a pine floor, built-in wardrobes and a full ensuite with a Triton T90xr shower.
The guest bedroom also has two windows, a pine floor and maple built-in wardrobes as well as an integrated work station. Its ensuite has a Triton Aqua Sensation shower.
Each bedroom features commanding views of the surrounding countryside. The property also contains a double garage adjoining the house and the doors are electric.
The garden is largely in lawns and also includes barbeque and patio areas, as well as range of fruit trees.
Bailieborough, Co Cavan
Asking price: €349,000
Agent: Martin Shortt 049 854 7249