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Developers have demonstrated they will not build affordable homes despite government incentives - Eoin Ó Broin TD

10 August, 2017 - by Eoin Ó Broin TD


Sinn Féin Housing spokesperson Eoin Ó Broin TD has said that it is up to the State to roll out affordable housing schemes. Private developers, despite a number of government incentives on offer, have shown they do not want to build affordable homes.

The Dublin Mid-West TD said:

“In recent years the government has rolled out a number of schemes funded by the taxpayer to encourage developers to build affordable homes.

“The Planning Rebate Scheme, which aims to encourage developers to build units and sell units for €300,000 or less in return for a refund of development levies has only attracted builders across of 16 housing developments across Dublin and will only result in approx. 1,283 affordable homes being delivered.

“The Help-to Buy Scheme which the government claimed would increase the supply of affordable homes for first time buyers has in fact pushed house prices up and should be scrapped.

“The €200m Local Infrastructure Housing Activation Fund (LIHAF) was established to assist private developers to unlock development sites by funding infrastructure like bridges and roads in return for some affordable homes.

“Originally developers were meant to work with local authorities to come to an agreement where at least 40% of all new homes would be sold at prices at least 10% below the market rate, or less than €300,000 in Dublin.

“However, this requirement has been watered down and as we speak no agreements have been reached between local authorities and developers on the issue of affordability.

"Huge global development companies should not be getting taxpayer’s money they don’t need to build homes that people cannot afford.

“Private developers have no interest in building affordable homes. There is a growing number of people earning between €40,000 and €70,000 a year in need of an affordable home to purchase or rent.

“The state can build a social home for an average cost of €191,000. It is Sinn Féin’s view that the State must step in and start funding council led mixed tenure developments, which includes social and affordable homes for sale and rent. If council homes can be built for €191,000, they can be sold for between €200,000 and €210,000.”

ENDS//

PQ response with cost of building social house and PQ on the planning rebate scheme

QUESTION NO:  2265

DÁIL QUESTION addressed to the Minister of State for Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy)
by Deputy Eoin Ó Broin
for WRITTEN ANSWER on 20/06/2017  

 To ask the Minister for Housing; Planning; Community and Local Government the average cost of one, two, three and four bed local authority new build units on the basis of costings submitted to his department by local authorities over the past 12 months; if he will provide a breakdown of all in costs and construction only costs; and the itemised costed list of the individual non construction costs for each unit size.

   REPLY.

The following are the average costs for the range of differently sized social housing units as sought by the Deputy, in terms of both construction costs and ‘all-in’ costs.  These are based on the analysis of returned data from tendered social housing schemes over an extended period. Construction cost is reflective of building costs (including VAT) and also includes normal site works and site development. All-in cost includes cost of construction, land cost, professional fees, utility connections, site investigations/surveys, archaeology where appropriate, VAT and contribution to public art.  Abnormal costs are excluded from these figures.

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My Department will continue to maintain a clear focus on delivering overall value for money on both the construction and all-in costs of social housing projects.


QUESTION NO:  1615

DÁIL QUESTION addressed to the Minister for Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy)
by Deputy Eoin Ó Broin
for WRITTEN ANSWER on 26/07/2017  


 
 To ask the Minister for Housing; Planning; Community and Local Government the number of builders that applied for the planning rebate scheme in each of the years 2014 to 2016 and to date in 2017; and the cost of the scheme in each of these years.
  
REPLY.
The development contribution rebate scheme featured as part of the Government's housing package, entitled "Stabilising Rents, Boosting Supply", which was announced by the previous Government in November 2015.  The primary objective of the scheme was to enhance the viability of the construction and sale of residential housing units at affordable prices in the locations of greatest need. Details of the scheme are outlined in Circular letter PL 13/2015, which issued to the relevant local authorities, and which is available on my Department's website at the following link: http://www.housing.gov.ie/search/category/planning/sub-type/circular/topic/development-management?query.

Returns to date from the local authorities concerned indicate that there has been limited uptake in relation to the scheme, as follows:

- Fingal County Council estimates overall costs for 2017 at €6.8 million to cover rebates on expressions of interest received for 798 units spread across 9 developments. First applications are expected later this year with rebates likely payable in early 2018.

- South Dublin County Council estimates overall costs for 2017 of approximately €3.5m - €4m to cover rebates on expressions of interest received for 485 units spread across 7 developments. First applications are expected later this year with rebates likely payable in early 2018.

- Only one application has been received to date by Dublin City Council. It is for a part development and cannot be processed, until the total number of units exceeds 50.

- Cork City Council, Cork County Council and Dún Laoghaire Rathdown County Council have reported no uptake to date and have received no applications as a consequence.

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