Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Clog Na Léinn – Affordable Country Living in the Heartland of Ireland

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Clog Na Léinn, on the Castlepollard Road in Collinstown, is already one of the most talked-about and eagerly anticipated new developments in the county – a development where quality soars above expectation and the latest home-building technology has been utilised to give new homeowners something to cherish.

Clog na Léinn is being built in six phases and we were given planning as we went along, so we had to complete each phase as we went along. We have completed phase 1, 2 and 3 and they are occupied,” explained Alfie Devine.

“Phase 4 has seven houses and it has one house occupied and there are a couple of houses that have sale agreed. In Phase 5, there are ten houses, one house is occupied and four are sold. We have also got planning through for another 14 houses in Phase 6.”

He said that the houses are all four bedroom detached houses. They are high end, but affordable, because of the size of the house, size of the site and they are also ‘turnkey’ – new homeowners can turn the key and walk straight in and live in the house immediately with no need to add any furniture or appliances, etc., and that is important.

“If you bought a general developer’s house, they are minimalistic and not turnkey so you have to weigh up like for like value wise,” Alfie said.

“Also Collinstown is a lovely place to live. It is a great location if you want to get to places like Dublin, Drogheda, Longford and of course Mullingar. You are only 15 minutes away from the N3 and 15 minutes away from the N4. Some people work a day or two in Dublin and then work the other few days from home so it suits a lot of people.

“It is also a very peaceful village, right beside the lakes such as Lough Lene. It has beautiful scenery and has a national school, a church and good sporting facilities and a very active local friendly community.”

The houses are all A1 rated and that means they include solar panels fitted with the build. There is an option to include an electric car charger in the house if you wish or extra panels which would leave the house almost passive.

“When we started this development, this type of house was one of the first in the country as an A1-rated detached dwelling. All the houses are detached so it is a very exclusive sort of development,” Alfie continued.

Many of the people who purchase these houses like to work from home. Many of them have moved out of the city and the houses have fibre broadband built into them as standard and that is a huge bonus for people who want to work from home.

There are rooms in the houses that have been converted or can be converted into offices. “Anyone who has bought one of these houses in this development have told us they are very content.”

On the rating of the house, there are very few housing estates that are actually A1 rated which is the top end of rating you can get. Some people have added to that and they buy extra solar panels so they are generating more energy than they are using so they are actually in credit on their utility bills – that is a big plus.

When the houses are sold the energy bills are very low in comparison to an A2 or A3 house. They are all run on an exhaust air pump which is a unit that continuously recycles the heat in the house. The houses are so well insulated they don’t actually have a heating system as such. The exhaust air system exhausts the air from the high humidity areas such as your bathroom and utility room. That continuously pulls fresh air into the house.

So on days of high temperature the house will remain quite cool.

During the summer months the heating system isn’t really running at all and any heating that is developed within the house is put back into the hot water system so it is very, very efficient and is triple ‘A’ rated.

“The houses themselves are built by a company down in Wexford who are a high quality timber frame company. It is a close sale system. The house arrives in panels, and it is ready for rendering on the inside, and then on the outside we developed our own system, along with Webber Render and a company called Aqua panel, so there are no blocks at all,” explained Louis Peppard.

“It is very sustainable as it is a cement board with an acrylic render finish on the outside. The only block used is in the foundations.

“It is a traditional build foundation which is concrete foundation and block, with a concrete sub floor and then the insulation. Then you have your screed on top with your heating pipes built into that, so the only bit that is traditional is the foundation block work and concrete. Everything else is timber frame and cement board with a render finish on the outside.

“When someone buys a house, we don’t finish them out completely. We give them an allowance for kitchen units, utility units, for bathroom ware and for tiling, etc. So every home is bespoke. So you come in and design your own finish. We have different suppliers that we use – Nolan Kitchens, World of Tiles, Door and Floor Centre (Navan).

“These companies have all the supplies that we need so we send our buyers off to them and they pick the finish for their floor and we fit that to their style. So every house is individual and every house is different.”

Everyone working on this development is a local tradesman. From the ground workers, to the plasters to the roofers. NJ Doyne (Noel Doyne) is the builder. He is based in the UK but he is from the village of Collinstown originally and his family are all living around here. So we have put together a team of guys of top class local tradesmen.

They have years and years of experience and they all live within a five- or 10-mile radius of this housing development. “We keep all the work and business local, as much as we can, so we are putting money and work back into the local community. We deal with Floods Concrete from Oldcastle, Johnny Owens who is local, Dessie Greene for the natural stone for the outside finish,” Louis said.

There are four or five different style of houses and they range from €370,000 to just over €500,000 for some of the new style houses in Phase 5.

They start at around 1,800 sq.ft to 2,400 sq.ft approximately. The bigger houses have an integrated garage which is very useful, particularly in the winter for an EV car.

Noel Doyne, when building these houses, really wanted to go for quality and made sure they were A1 houses – the most energy efficient – so that took a lot of work in the mechanics of building the house and to achieve it at that price. In fact, you will find it very difficult to find a similar A1 house in the country.

“The first person to buy one of these houses was from America. We have buyers that have come in from South America such as Brazilians, Columbians, South Africa, Germans, the UK and of course we have Irish here too. We get a lot of enquiries from the UK,” Louis contiued.

“The first buyer came in from Texas. They wanted to move here because they liked the climate and thought Ireland was the best place in Europe to live. He said at the time he had looked all over Ireland and he couldn’t find an A1 house. He wanted a detached A1 rated house.

“They were flying back to Texas very disappointed at not having found the house they wanted. We had just launched our website and on his flight back to Texas he just saw this new A1-rated housing estate with lots of lovely houses for sale. He arrived in Texas and put the deposit down straight away and flew back to Ireland the next week and came down to Collins­town to see the houses and bought the first one.”

Alfie continued: “We started this project in late 2018 and we plan to be completely finished here by end of 2024. At the moment we are in the process of handing over some of the estate back to the Council. We will leave everything completely finished. The roads will be fully tarmaced, the ramps in, the green areas finished off and the landscaping and by the end of next year.

“At the moment we have seven sale agreed houses that we need to have finished by the end of August. We have just five houses of Phase 5 left to sell, so there is great interest.”

Clog Na Léinn is a housing development that will have 62 beautiful new modern houses when completed will be a massive boost for Collinstown. The people that are living here will be doing their business locally in the shops, and their children will be attended the local schools and integrating in the local community.

For more information see www.clognaleinn.ie or contact Davitt and Davitt auctioneers on 044 9340000

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