What will it cost to restore this Drumcondra fixer-upper seeking €420,000?

Handsome four-bed redbrick in two flats in a central Dublin 9 location has lots of potential

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Address: 47 Richmond Road, Drumcondra, D9
Price: €425,000
Agent: Kelly Bradshaw Dalton
View this property on MyHome.ie

Built in 1902 number 47 is a handsome redbrick with granite lintels set well back from Richmond Road, a busy thoroughfare connecting Drumcondra to Ballybough and Fairview.

While subdivided into two flats it has retained key original features like good ceiling heights of about 2.9m at hall level, coving and a smart marble fireplace in the front reception room. What would be the ballpark cost to upgrade and return this property for single owner use?

According to Kelly Bradshaw Dalton selling agent, Lisa Brown, the house needs a new heating system and because of its subdivision it has two meters and is likely to need rewiring and possible replumbing.

Kevin Moran of Moran Builders says building costs are on the rise.


“They’re up 10 per cent in the last 18 months. Brexit, Covid, supply and demand and transport issues are all to blame.”

He adds that labour costs remain steady despite anecdotal stories of crazy costs for projects. A selling agent in the area cited a recent buyer in Fairview who was quoted €80,000 for rewiring and replumbing a house they were considering buying.

Number 47 with 130sq m/1399sq ft of space and four bedrooms is on the market seeking €420,000. Moran, who viewed the property online, estimates rewiring at €14,000 and replumbing to include a new boiler and heating system at €17,000, a total of €31,000.

Clearout works to remove fixtures, plumbing, floor coverings, sanitaryware and furnishings will cost about €5,000.

Rewiring and replumbing are disruptive works with implications for flooring and skirting. He suggests budgeting €6,000 for this. Walls will need plastering, another €4,500 and painting throughout at around €8,000.

Attic and wall insulation will cost around €3,000 and if there are timber joists under the ground floor boards each of the reception rooms and hall could be insulated at an additional cost of about €600 per room.

An upgrade to the existing aluminium windows and doors will cost from about €9,000.

Tiling for two bathrooms would be around €2,500, excluding tiles, and a basic kitchen can start from €7,000, while new sanitaryware adds a further €4,000 to the bill.

This brings internal works to around €80,000 with Moran suggesting around a further €10,000 for preliminary works and contingency and €5,000 for landscaping to rear, which is about 45sq m in size and where there is vehicular rear access.

All told he estimates a budget of around €95,000, which when added to the asking price would provide a refurbished home for around €520,000. But remember these costs don’t include major structural works such as a big kitchen/living extension to the rear of the property or remedial works to the existing single-storey, felt roof extension.

To counter prohibitively steep costs when embarking on a major refurb project, Moran’s advice is to get five tenders for works, more than the usual three recommended. That way there might be one outlier, but there should be three accurately priced tenders within the five.

A walk-in condition property on the road, number 52, on the opposite side of the street and overlooking the river is a two-bed of 95sq m and it sold last month for €480,000 according to the Property Price Register.

Number 8, on the same south side of the street is a three-bed of 82sq m which came to the market seeking €415,000 and has been sale agreed at around that price. In 2019 number 24, another three-bed, sold for €505,000 while number 61, a two-d plus attic room house of 93sq m, in mint condition, sold for €525,000.

Alanna Gallagher

Alanna Gallagher

Alanna Gallagher is a contributor to The Irish Times specialising in property and interiors