WATCH: The moment Daniel O’Donnell loses his cool about the budget for his house on tonight’s Room to Improve
Poor wee Daniel.
This is the moment on tonight’s Room to Improve on RTÉ One that Donegal crooner Daniel O’Donnell loses his cool with celebrity architect Dermot Bannon when he hears the estimated budget for the renovation of his home has ballooned to just below €400,000.
Viewers of tonight's show will see Dermot show Daniel and Majella O’Donnell a plan for their home in Kincasslagh, west Donegal, that comes in at a relatively modest €200,000.
But as the couple start tweaking the plans, including retaining an en-suite upstairs, the costs sky rocket. When Room to Improve quantity surveyor Lisa O’Brien comes to break the news, Daniel is not happy.
Lisa O’Brien says: “We got three tenders back. They are ranging from €340,000 to €395,000. The build rates that I got back from the main contractors are good value. The original design changed and the tender package that went out was not the original design that was on the cost plan.
"There were changes made. Daniel wanted to keep an en-suite upstairs, therefore, there were walls to be knocked down which were structural... This is typical. At tender stage you put all the wishes and the dreams into that tender document, then reality hits that they can’t afford that and we rein it back."
Dermot suggests that getting rid of the en-suite would scale the projected cost back by at least €20,000.
But Daniel tells him: “It is a ridiculous figure. You came first of all with a fantastic plan and now you are taking the whole lot away again. There is no point in beating about the bush.”
Dermot tries to reassure him, telling him this is a normal process and they will “hammer” and “chip” away at the costs and go back to contractors about it.
But Daniel is not impressed telling him: “You will need to have some chisel and hammer to get this back to something that I’ll like” and going on to tell the cameras: “Even though I would like things done to the house, I couldn’t care less if there was nothing done.”
Country music legend Daniel O’Donnell and his wife Majella share a large four-bed detached home in Kincasslagh, west Donegal. Unlike Daniel, who’s fairly happy with the place, Majella is keen to upgrade and reconfigure the interior. With her husband on tour, she’s determined to get the very best from her architect.
Dermot plans to unify three ground floor rooms to create a huge open plan kitchen and living area, overlooked by a mezzanine library.
Rejecting the ‘folly’ of oak finishes and viewing platforms, Daniel is far more interested in salvaging wardrobes and adding an ensuite bathroom to every bedroom in the house. Likewise, he has little patience for Dermot’s suggestion of ‘secret’ doors and wall claddings.
As a massive consignment of triple glazed windows arrives on site, the concerted efforts of nine fitters are nothing compared to Dermot’s challenge of placating his feistiest and most single-minded clients yet.
Whatever happens, this looks set to be the most memorable saga yet of the ‘homes of Donegal’.
Check out tonight's episode of Room to Improve on RTÉ One, Sunday, 18 February at 9.30pm.