Wednesday 20 September 2017

New Homes: Smaller units are a tempting option for first-time buyers

A new starter homes launch in Navan is expected to tap into help-to-buy funds, Liadan Hynes reports

OPTIONS: The homes at Cois Glaisin, in Navan, Co Meath, have been designed with simplicity and storage in mind, as shown above, and requite as little maintenance as
possible while being functional. The first 11 houses, an example of which is pictured inset, will be ready for occupation in approximately four to six weeks
OPTIONS: The homes at Cois Glaisin, in Navan, Co Meath, have been designed with simplicity and storage in mind, as shown above, and requite as little maintenance as possible while being functional. The first 11 houses, an example of which is pictured inset, will be ready for occupation in approximately four to six weeks
OPTIONS: The homes at Cois Glaisin, in Navan, Co Meath, have been designed with simplicity and storage in mind, as shown above, and requite as little maintenance as possible while being functional. The first 11 houses, an example of which is pictured inset, will be ready for occupation in approximately four to six weeks

Bridgedale's last big launch was the Marina Village, in Greystones, Co Wicklow, one of most hugely anticipated new homes events of 2016. It was a waterside development of high-end units, aimed largely at those looking for forever family homes or downsizer's apartments.

This weekend's launch of Cois Glaisin, in Navan, Co Meath, is a different affair, with selling agent Sherry FitzGerald expecting up to 80pc of interest to come from first-time buyers, as units have been priced from €199,000, making them eminently accessible to first-time buyers.

Cois Glaisin was originally launched in 2009 by Tailored Homes Navan, but at the time only 20 homes were sold. Bridgedale has since taken over the site and is launching a mixture of two, three and four-bedroom homes this weekend. Located in the Johnstown area, the scheme is 2km from Navan town centre and about two minutes from the M3.

The development will include 350 units, with approximately 40 units in the current phase. There are seven house types available: the Boyne, c76-83sqm, is a mid or end-of-terrace two-bed property set out over two floors; the Delvin, c107-112sqm, a three-bedroom mid or end-of-terrace unit; the Stoneyford, c110sq and the Tolka, c109sqm, are both three-bedroom semi-detached units; the Monagh, c130sqm, is a four-bed detached property; the Rye, c132sqm, is a four-bed semi-detached unit; and the Blackwater, a three-bed corner semi-detached and end-of-terrace unit.

Two beds are priced from €199,000, three beds from €229,000 and four beds from €285,000.

It seemed for a time in the past year or so that anything less than a three-bed semi-detached was relegated to "crazy things we bought in the boom" territory.

Increasingly though, new developments seem to be taking into account smaller units for buyers who are resistant to the option of an apartment but can't yet afford a traditional family home. The two-up two-down home in this development is just such a type.

"It's a living room and a separate kitchen/dining room downstairs, downstairs WC, and then two double bedrooms upstairs, both en suite," says Stephen Garvey, CEO of Bridgedale.

"We see the buyer of the two-bed as maybe first-time buyers, single people."

The addition of the second bedroom upstairs was with an eye to these units being attractive to the rental market at some point.

Interest in advance of the launch has been strong, with approximately 500 potential buyers registered for this weekend's viewings.

"It is somewhat reflective of the market and what we've seen to date," says Ivan Gaine, Sherry FitzGerald's head of new homes. "Last year we would have seen about 60pc first-time buyers in the market, this year we're nearly 75pc. I suppose what we are seeing is the rebate being very effective, and allowing people to get on the ladder much more easily."

Bridgedale has also noticed that among those who have registered their interest, and alongside first-time buyers, there is a large number of buyers who are downsizing from larger properties in the area. "Older couples who probably have a house out in the country, or a large four-bed are looking at the two-bed as a trader-down property," explains Garvey.

There are four show homes opening this weekend on the development - a two-bedroom, two three-bedroom styles and a four-bed unit.

"I think what buyers want is simplicity, and storage," says Garvey. "They want very clean lines, nothing overcomplicated, as little maintenance as possible, a modern kitchen. They want the house to be as functional as possible."

The first 11 houses will be ready for occupation in about four to six weeks. The balance of this phase of 40 houses will be ready for occupation from July onwards.

Navan is proving popular among those working in the airport, which is a 30-minute drive away, says Garvey. Gaine adds: "It's good to see the momentum travelling further through the Royal County. We expected that Meath and Kildare would see the next stage of house building," says Gaine. "It's good to see the momentum travelling further."

Viewing: Today 2-4pm

Agent: Sherry FitzGerald (01) 667 1888/ Raymond Potterton (046) 902 7666

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