Monday 14 October 2019

I love my small apartment, but it's time to move on

Journalist John Meagher outside his apartmednt in Islandbridge Pic Liam Mulcahy
Journalist John Meagher outside his apartmednt in Islandbridge Pic Liam Mulcahy

I'm no stranger to the one-bedroom apartment having lived in more than I care to remember since moving to Dublin 18 years ago.

At the moment my wife and I own a unit in Islandbridge -- between the Phoenix Park and the War Memorial Gardens. I'm a 15-minute cycle away from O'Connell Street and the Heuston Station Luas stop is a short walk up Conyngham Road.

I bought the property in 2005 for €296,000 -- in hindsight, a ridiculous sum of money for a property that totals 42sqm. But I felt I'd been throwing my money away by renting and, besides, couldn't have imagined a recession as bad as this one.

A schoolfriend built a four-bedroom mansion in Tipperary for less money around the same time. Yet, there is a premium for living so close to the centre of our capital and, for the most part, I've been happy to pay for the privilege of being within walking distance of a myriad of attractions, shops and services.

Having bought a three-bedroom house in a west Dublin estate several years previously -- and lived there for less than a year -- I categorically know that I never again want to live in sprawling suburbia, even in a home that's markedly bigger.

But there are huge challenges involved in living somewhere so small.

A great deal of the possessions my wife and I have hoarded over the years have to be stored in our parents' homes. We just don't have enough room for them. We even have to have seasonable wardrobes.

And when you live somewhere so small the notion of entertaining friends goes out the window.

Yet, hand on heart, I've enjoyed the last six years there.

With Lynn expecting our first baby next summer, it will be time to move on to somewhere much, much bigger.

Irish Independent

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