Priced out of Harold’s Cross? Consider Crumlin

Close to the city centre, handy for the M50 and with plenty of green space, Crumlin is a target for young buyers keen to stay central

Crumlin came into existence as a manorial settlement that grew into an Anglo-Norman village after 1170, and subsequently developed into what is one of the most talked about neighbourhoods of Dublin in recent times, largely due to two men: Conor McGregor and Christy Kinahan.

McGregor, the UFC mixed martial artist was raised here in the early period of his life – before moving to Lucan – and has spoken of his upbringing there and how the traditionally working-class area helped to form his psyche and mentality as an athlete.

A recent article by US journalist Wright Thompson, charting McGregor’s rise to the pinnacle of his sport, depicted Crumlin as an area that is virtually lawless and defined by the presence of the Kinahan drug cartel – a number of whose members live in the area.

The area is known for producing the likes of actor Gabriel Byrne, rock star Phil Lynott, painter Christy Brown and Ireland soccer international Paul McGrath.


Where exactly is Crumlin?

Part of Dublin 12, Crumlin is a south Dublin suburb located to the south of Drimnagh, and east of Bluebell, Greenhills and Perrystown. To the west, there's the expensive and highly sought after locations of Harold's Cross and Terenure. Crumlin and adjoining Kimmage form an area that has surged in popularity over the last two years. Time spent locally reveals a largely quiet, mature neighbourhood, with a large stock of predominantly semi-detached and terraced homes.

New buyers are attracted to the value in the two- and three-bed terraced homes close to Crumlin village, as well as the builds around Sundrive Road, which have a high demand due to their proximity to Kimmage Village and the wide variety of shops and cafés on offer.

For those with access to funding the most desirable homes in the area are the redbrick, semi-detached houses in Iveagh Gardens, which are set just off the Crumlin Road in a quiet and leafy estate.

The Iveagh Gardens estate was built by the Iveagh Trust established by Edward Guinness, with 136 properties constructed between 1926 and 1936. Visually stunning from the exterior, these homes represent the top of the Crumlin market.

Private developers also built streets of homes in the 1930s and 1940s, most of them three- or four-bed family homes. In the 1950s and 1960s, Dublin Corporation (now Dublin City Council) built social housing to supplement the housing stock that was already there: these two- or three-beds make ideal starter homes for first-time buyers.

Large garden spaces, sometimes 100ft long, also earmark them as good choices for young families. "Many families in the area are buying the two-beds and adding on extensions to turn them into four-beds, while keeping garden space," says Eoin Gorry, an estate agent with DNG Terenure.

What’s Crumlin village like?

The village area runs along St Agnes Road, with the usual town facilities supplied, but without much fanfare. Along the Crumlin Road, which leads from Dublin 8 and along the northern border of the area before continuing into Walkinstown, there is a seemingly endless supply of retail outlets, but the sheer length of the stretch means there isn't any real centre to the area.

The other main service area is at the junction of St Agnes Road and Kimmage Road West, where you can find another line of shops. At the very corner is The Hungry Duck restaurant, serving food all day, and really high-quality fare at that: it’s the best place to eat in the area by quite some distance and sets a high bar for other eateries in the area.

Green space in plentiful supply

Crumlin has much more green space than one would anticipate for such a built-up area. Stannaway Park and Eamonn Ceannt Park to the south and east are large open spaces which add much in value, but there are 12 other green parcels giving relief from residential constructions in virtually every sub-section of the area. The main sports in the area are soccer, GAA and boxing, with a selection of clubs. The Guinness Rugby Club is also just off the Crumlin Road and martial arts are covered by the Loreto College Kenpo Club.

Are there any new developments?

Not many. There are few land parcels that are available for new developments – hence the lack of new supply. There are a few developments in the pipeline, including two four-bed homes on St Teresa's Road; planning has also been granted for 16 homes on a site off Balfe Road East behind Crumlin Village, and 33 apartments off Raleigh Square.

"The current housing stock is low, as is the case across the board in Dublin – when properties do hit the market they don't take long to go sale-agreed as there are queues of potential buyers looking to get into the area, as the houses are well built, surrounded by a wealth of amenities and close to town," says David Scally, Castle Estate Agents property services manager for Dublin 12.

Who’s buying?

“It’s mostly young professionals buying at the moment,” says Gorry. “They’re either working in hospitals or in the city centre. Many of those buyers are from south Dublin and know the area, or from the country and want to live in an area close to the city centre. There is an older demographic that have been there all their lives as well, which has led to a lot of probate and executor sales recently. There are also a number of investors due to the proximity to the city.”

These new buyers are attracted to the value in the two- and three-bed terraced homes close to Crumlin Village, as well as the builds around Sundrive Road, which have a high demand due to their proximity to Kimmage village and the wide variety of shops and cafés.

Often in the past a family might have traded up and moved out of Crumlin to a more upwardly mobile area, but depending on what direction the area moves in socially and in terms of retail development, a current buyer is far more likely to stay within the neighbourhood as it continues to adapt, with the buyer becoming part of its modern history as it moves from being a predominantly working-class area into something more nuanced.

What are prices like in the area?

A two-bed terraced house in east Crumlin, built originally as social housing, starts at just under €200k on the market. One step up the ladder, at a starting value of €325k, will get you a three-bed terraced home in south Crumlin. At the top end of the market are the Iveagh Gardens – Guinness-built red-brick homes which start at €450k but usually sell at about €500k.

For Sale

Two-bed, one-bath, terraced house at 289 Captain’s Road for €220k. Agent: DNG.

Three-bed, one-bath, terraced house at 90 Stannaway Road for €349k. Agent: Castle.

Three-bed, two-bath, semi-detached house at 93 Iveagh Gardens for €449k. Agent: Castle.

For Rent

Two-bed, one-bath, terraced house at 96 Derry Road, for €1,600 a month.