19/02/2020

Incoming Govt Must Prioritise Affordable Rental Homes

Ireland's incoming new government must prioritise the roll out of affordable cost rental homes, Sinn Féin Housing spokesperson Eoin Ó Broin has said.

His comments come as two different reports published by Bank for International Settlements and by the EU agency Eurofound, indicate that housing in this State is the second most expensive in advanced economies and that the number of Irish people aged 25-29 living with their parents grew at one of the highest rates in Europe.

Deputy Ó Broin said: "A study by the Bank for International Settlements, Property price dynamics: domestic and international drivers indicate that property prices in this State have risen more than other advanced economy since the end of 2015.

"The study also acknowledges that there is preliminary evidence which shows that international investors are having an impact on local property prices.

"This is further evidenced by, as reported in the Irish Times, according to the Construction Industry Federation (CIF), investment funds bought 95% of the 3,644 apartments completed in 2019.

"This makes the findings of the Eurofound report published in the Irish Times today less surprising.

"The report shows that the number of Irish people aged 25-29 living at home grew at one of the highest rates in Europe in the decade between 2007 and 2017. Just over 47% of people in this age group were living at home, a rise of just over 11% over ten years compared to an average rise of 2% across the rest of Europe.

"There are solutions. The next government must commit to ambitious targets and the required funding in order to roll out affordable cost rental.

"This has been government policy since 2014, yet not one affordable cost rental home has been delivered. There are 50 under construction in Dublin but at €1,200 per month these are not affordable.

"We need affordable cost rental homes to rent in Dublin at between €700 and €900 per month and lower in areas outside the Capital.

"There is public land available for these projects. Clonburris in my own constituency, St. Michael's Estate in Inchicore, Oscar Traynor Road in Dublin City, Cathal Brugha Barracks in Rathmines and Broadstone Bus Depot in Phibsboro.

"Additional sites in Cork, Galway, Waterford and Limerick could also be readily identified.

"People can't wait any longer. The policy is there, the sites are there, we just need a commitment from all parties that the funding and plan will be a priority as part of a government for change."

(MH/JG)

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