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Only 30% of Rebuilding Ireland Homeloan applications approved - Eoin Ó Broin TD

27 June, 2018 - by Eoin Ó Broin TD


Sinn Féin Housing spokesperson Eoin Ó Broin TD has commented on figures received in response to a parliamentary question on the uptake of the Rebuilding Ireland Homeloan. The figures indicate that out of the 1,500 Rebuilding Ireland Homeloan applications received only 458 or 30% were recommended for approval by the end of May. 

The Dublin Mid-West TD said 

“The figures received from the Department of Housing indicate a very low level of approvals for the Rebuilding Ireland Homeloan that was launched in February this year. 

“Over four months to May, 1,499 applications were received. The bulk of these applications were from areas of high housing pressure in Dublin and around the commuter belt.

“In total there 619 applications from Dublin, with 540 applications from Cork, Galway, Kildare, Louth, Meath and Wicklow and 340 applications were received from other counties.

“Coupled with the low level of approval is the fact that the average loan amount for the 458 applications recommended for approval by the end of May was only €189,133.

“With house prices continuing to rise in the key demand areas of Dublin and commuter belt this amount is not sufficient for most potential home buyers.

“According to latest figures from the Daft.ie quarterly house price report Dublin the average house price in Dublin is €368,356. This is out of reach for most low to middle income earners.

“The Department figures show that the Minister’s home loan scheme is off to an inauspicious start. At the time Sinn Féin said the focus should be on making the homes more affordable as opposed to providing more credit for the unsustainable market prices.

“An affordable housing purchase scheme for households earning between €40,000 and €75,000 with homes priced at between €170,000 and €260,000 is what is needed and is what can be done if you look at the success of the O Cualann model in Ballymun. 

“Households cannot wait much longer for this government to act and to introduce an affordable housing scheme that works.”

ENDS//

Note to Editor: PQ response below

For WRITTEN answer on Thursday, 21 June, 2018.

To ask the Minister for Housing; Planning and Local Government the number of Rebuilding Ireland home loans approved; the number of loans drawn down; the average loan approved; the amount approved; the draw down; and the number of loan applications rejected in each of the months since the scheme was introduced in tabular form.

- Eoin Ó Broin T.D.

REPLY

As with the previous local authority home loan offerings, loan applications under the Rebuilding Ireland Home Loan are made directly to the local authority in whose area the property proposed for purchase is situated. My Department does not directly collect information on the number of enquiries to local authorities regarding the loan or the number of loan applications received by local authorities.

However, as is currently the case, my Department will continue to publish information on the overall number and value of (i) local authority loan approvals and (ii) local authority loan drawdowns. Information up to Q3 2017 is available on the Department's website at the following link: http://www.housing.gov.ie/housing/statistics/house-prices-loans-and-profile-borrowers/local-authority-loan-activity, and this information will be updated on a quarterly basis as additional data is compiled.
The Housing Agency provides a central support service which assesses valid loan applications that are made to the local authorities and makes recommendations to the authorities as to whether loans should be offered to applicants. 
I have asked the Agency to centrally compile figures of the numbers of applications that it has assessed and the most recent figures, as at the end of May, indicate that the Agency had received a total of 1,499 applications for assessment from local authorities. This was made up of 540 applications from Cork, Galway, Kildare, Louth, Meath and Wicklow and 619 applications from Dublin. There were 340 applications received from counties outside those listed.

Of the 1,499 applications received, 1,150 were deemed to be valid. Of these valid applications, 876 had been assessed and 52% of these had been recommended for approval. The average turnaround time for applications underwritten by the Housing Agency at the end of May was 22 calendar days. 

Each local authority must have in place a credit committee and it is a matter for the committee to make the decision on applications for loans, in accordance with the regulations, having regard to the recommendations made by the Housing Agency.

With regard to the values of the loans approved to date, figures are not available concerning the breakdown of amounts approved in the manner referred to. However, the Housing Agency has advised that the average loan amount for the 458 applications recommended for approval by the end of May was €189,133.

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