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House of the week: College Road, Cork

College Road, Cork

€285,000

Sq m 130 (1,400 sq ft)

Bedrooms: 4

Bathrooms: 4

BER: C3

Best Feature: Well-delivered architect’s home

From the exterior, there’s barely a hint of the quality to be found within the three-storey home 3 Sunview Terrace - it’s one to view if you want lots of well-finished city home for your euros.

Set near UCC, this early 1900s mid-terrace home has been the private home of an architect and his young family for ten years or so, and during that period of ownership, got upgraded inside and outside, from top to bottom, on all three levels;  it got a cedar-clad box dormer up top creating bright and spacious bedrooms at attic levels, and its material and finishes are well above the usual spec.

Now, having bought a larger trade-up house, the owners have put their fully-reworked 1,400 sq ft home on the market, and it’s priced at €285,000 by estate agent Brian Olden of Cohalan Downing, who reckons there’s great value to be had for its interior quality, its attractive gardens, and location within a short walk of the city centre, with off-street parking. 

And, bonus points too for a south-facing landscaped back garden with very solid, chalet-like timber home office, and glazed extension by the rear kitchen/dining room, which floods this hospitable space with light and solar gain.

Sunview Terrace is set off the College Road, near the top of Donovans’ Hill and backs onto MacCurtain Villas. It's a cul de sac with a sort or hammer-head top to it, delineated by this row of eight  terraced houses beyond some more recent builds.

It’s very close to UCC, and the Bon Secours, and there’s plenty of student bustle around the vicinity, but this end of Sunview Terrace seems home to quite a few owner-occupiers, and that’s the buying cohort that Mr Olden expects for No 3, which he notes is a walk-in job.

It appears the architect owner of No 3 may have influenced some of his own neighbours too, because the same cedar boards he used to for his attic level broad dormers has been emulated by several adjoining residents too, and it adds a nice bit of homogeneity - as well as making for smart,spacious top-deck rooms.  In the case of No 3, the front top bedroom has glazed side panels in that dormer box for views west and east toward St Fin Barre’s Cathedral.

The quality of the door furniture on No 3’s painted hardwood door set the first tone on visiting, and then the quality materials theme gathers pace ever inwards, and doesn’t really get dropped in any room.

There’s rock-solid wide-plank solid oak flooring thru’ much of the ground floor, running without door saddles or the slightest change of levels right out to the utility room which is beyond the open-plan kitchen/dining room. There's tactile, above-average quality oak joinery throughout, including doors (with brushed steel handles, locks, etc) kitchen units, built-in furniture continues apace, and with storage spaces aplenty.

Knacky places hold that holy grail of storage, from understairs to niche cupboards, and the rear utility room has a pull-down stairs to a well-finished attic-style room, suitable almost as a study or den, and there’s a smartly tiled shower room/guest WC back here too.

There’s a surprising four bathrooms in this house: the master bedroom is en suite, an attic level room is en suite also, and the main family bathroom on a return level is super-slick, tiled top-to-toe, with some mosaic tiles. It has a bath and shower, and even space for chaise longue outside the door in case you have to wait for a plunge.

At ground level are a front reception room, a well-fitted rear kitchen/dining room with range cooker, tiled floor and a former side passage has been glazed over with a sloping glass ceiling over the dining table, and that helps to draw light back into a rear reception rooms, where there’s a gas-insert fireplace.

French doors open from here to a decked area, done with maintenance-free composite decking and then a short series of steps made from rail sleepers leads to a two-tier garden path and lawn sections, then on to that  man-cave, room-sized chalet/home office by the back boundary.

VERDICT: College vicinity home passes the quality test.