Tuesday 22 January 2019

New home view: The Heights of sophistication thanks to tax rebate scheme

  • Castle Heights Carrigaline, Co Cork

  • Asking price: €310,000-€440,000

  • Agent: Savills (021) 427 1371

Castle Heights living room
Castle Heights living room
En suite master bedroom at the development
Castle Heights exterior

Cork City rents are now 29pc higher than their Celtic Tiger peak, according to a Daft.ie report published earlier this month. With average rental prices surging 13.7pc to €1,301 in the third quarter from a year earlier, it's no surprise that tenants in the city are taking advantage of the help-to-buy tax rebate scheme to purchase their first home in commuter towns and reduce their monthly accommodation costs.

Indeed, first-time buyers have driven demand at Castle Heights, which is situated at the edge of Carrigaline, about 14km south of Cork city. The satellite town is set on the Owenabue river, with walks along the estuary to the picturesque sailing town of Crosshaven popular among family buyers. Myrtleville and Fountainstown beaches are also nearby.

Castle Heights is being built off the Kilmoney Road by Hallmark Building Services, a Mallow-based company that's also constructing Rock Brook, a development on the outskirts of Midleton. Castle Heights was launched in 2014, with a second phase following suit in 2016. A third phase, which will comprise 52 houses when it's finished, launched off the plans in the spring, with a showhouse opening in August.

There are 10 properties currently available from the third phase. Two are four-bed detached properties remaining from the first release; each of these measures 2,000 sq ft and is priced from €435,000 and €440,000, respectively.

The other eight houses are from a second tranche of 16 homes released earlier this autumn at the Meadow Walk section of Castle Heights. Five of these are in a three-bed semi-detached style, with each spanning 1,330 sq ft and costing from €310,000, while three are in a four-bed semi-detached design. The latter type has 1,575 sq ft of living space and is priced from €345,000.

The properties have a mix of redbrick and render to the façades, with slate grey-coloured UPVC windows lending a contemporary finish. There is cobble-lock paving to the front driveway, while the rear garden is surrounded by a 1.8m-high timber fence with concrete posts.

Unusually for a three-bed semi, the type S at Castle Heights has a rear extension to its open-plan kitchen/diner that facilitates a family living area with French doors that open onto the garden. Also on the ground floor is a separate living room up front with a bay window, a utility room with access to the side passage, and a guest WC. Upstairs, there is a master ensuite - also with a bay window - as well as a single bedroom and a double bedroom.

The kitchens are fitted by Celtic Interiors and Kube Kitchens. At the four-bed detached styles, buyers have a PC allowance of €8,000 for a kitchen, utility and wardrobes. The allowances for the semi-detached designs in this tranche amount to €7,500. A HÔTA cassette stove acts as a focal point in the living room, and the bathrooms and ensuites come with sanitaryware and heated towel rails.

A heat-recovery ventilation system has been installed in each of the A2-rated properties to create a constant supply of fresh air, and the heating from a Thermia air-source heat pump can be controlled at three different zones. Purchasers have the option of a Thermia system that can enable them to control the heating and hot water system remotely from any location.

In light traffic, Carrigaline is a 20-minute drive from both Cork city centre and Cork International Airport. The town is also a popular destination for buyers who work in the pharmaceutical companies based in nearby Ringaskiddy.

Viewings of the four-bed semi-detached showhouse, which was styled by House & Garden Furnishings, will be held tomorrow, from 12pm to 1pm.

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