Saturday 17 February 2018

New Homes: One suburb fits all – Dublin 15 family homes for every budget

From forever homes to starters, Liadan Hynes reports on the next phase launches in the ever popular Dublin 15

Bracken Park
Bracken Park
Liadan Hynes

Liadan Hynes

Prestigious schools, rolling parkland, a quaint village - it isn't hard to understand why Castleknock is the jewel in the crown of Dublin 15. It sits alongside Clontarf, Malahide, Howth and Sutton in terms of aspirational northside Dublin suburbs and appeals both to those who grew up there, and anyone in the market for leafy, green homes with a genuine village feel but still close to the city centre. The area is also experiencing something of a building boom, with a number of new developments now in their second or third phases.

Bracken Park, just beyond Castleknock College and within walking distance of the village, launched in April 2014 and has since won awards in landscaping and technology innovation. It includes a mix of five- and four-bed homes and two- and three-bed apartments. Of the 25 apartments launched so far, all have sold, many to down traders from the area.

The houses are suited to the new type of first- time buyer, ie, mid-thirties with kids and looking for a forever home. The sense of community established is palpable - teenagers putting out the bins, toddlers in the playground, a pensioner parking her car.

The recently launched final phase brings eight four-beds with a study, from €665,000 and two smaller four-beds at €630,000, all semi-detached, all south-facing, to the market. One draw is the spacious, bright open plan kitchen/living/dining room with glass spanning the greater part of the rear of the houses, ideal for keeping an eye on young children on the patio outside.

Cosgraves, the developer behind the project, is known for being ahead of the pack in terms of energy-saving technology and began adding features as early as 2004. Bracken Park houses have a BER rating of A2 and, while it's difficult to quantify yet just how much the new energy regulations will save on bills, estimates range as high as 20pc, and residents say yearly bills are on average between €1,400-€1,800.

The Bracken Park homes include an external services enclosure which contains the water tank, boiler, cold storage and pump system designed by the company itself. Situated in the back garden so as not to take up space indoors, they are weather resistant, and mean the noise of the shower pump is outside the home and any servicing work takes place outside.

Three of the three-storey five-bed semis, from €735,000, are still available. These include a large, first-floor room which could change from playroom to entertainment room as the kids grow up.

Park Developments' Hamilton Park, also in Castleknock, launches its second phase this weekend. Located off the Carpenterstown Road, the development is within walking distance of primary and secondary schools and situated around a green at the front of the development, with a playground, and excellent access to public transport. As such, these are perfect starter homes for families with young children who are looking to commit to Castleknock schools-wise, but may eventually want to trade up when budget allows. The first 50 houses launched in September of last year and are now sold out, and this second phase brings a further 35 houses - a mixture of three- and four-bed semi-detached and detached houses, c112 sqm, from €410,000 and 144-155 sqm from €440,000 respectively, with a mixture of A2 and A3 BER ratings.

The developer has been building in the area since the early eighties. In total, Hamilton Park will include approximately 400 homes to be completed over the next couple of years. Appealing features include a large American-style fridge in the four-beds and appliances are included in all. The large four-bed homes also include an attractive living area which faces towards the back garden and gives onto the kitchen/dining room, but can be closed off as well.

Also in Dublin 15, Ballymore are releasing the second phase of its Royal Canal Park in Ashtown this weekend. A popular site for apartments, this development on the banks of the Royal Canal comprises only of houses. These are appealing to apartment dwellers in the area who are finally able to buy, but don't want to move too far having begun to raise their children in the area, according to selling agent, Sherry FitzGerald. The project is also drawing first-time buyers who grew up in the nearby more affluent suburbs, but may not be able to afford to buy there.

In total, 152 houses are planned. This phase launches 30 three- and four-bed houses. The three-beds are from 114-122 sqm and start at €315,000. The four-beds at 145-162 sqm are a particularly good size and spec, and start at €350,000.

The master bedroom on the top floor includes a sloped ceiling, with large picture windows, an en suite with double shower and walk-in wardrobe. And if you're suffering from open-plan fatigue, these homes offer a nice mid-way solution - a living/dining room with an adjoining cosy room where small children could play still in sight, or older ones work on homework.

Blacken Park viewing today 2.30-4pm

Agent: Hooke & MacDonald (01) 631 8402

Hamilton Park viewing today, 2-5pm Agent: Sherry FitzGerald (01) 667 1888

Royal Canal Park viewing today, 2-4pm Agent: Sherry FitzGerald (01) 667 1888

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