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Labour housing proposals deeply ill conceived - Morgan

13 February, 2007

Sinn Féin Housing spokesperson Arthur Morgan TD today described Labour’s ‘Begin to Buy’ housing proposals as deeply ill-conceived. Deputy Morgan said that the proposals would have the effect of further inflating house prices and not actually do anything to address the underlying causes of the housing crisis.   


The Louth TD said: “The Labour Party’s ‘Begin to Buy’ proposals, supposedly designed to assist those trying to buy a house, are deeply ill conceived. The proposed scheme would clearly have the effect of pushing up house prices by artificially increasing the purchasing power of house buyers without doing anything to address the underlying problems.   


“The Labour Party is talking about the Government topping up house buyers funds by approximately €150,000. For this amount of money the Government can deliver a unit of social housing. Clearly then it makes far more sense for the Government to use its available funds to increase the delivery of social housing and address the needs of those least able to afford to buy first. We need to increase substantially the output of truly affordable homes.


“Our number one priority must be housing the 43,600 families languishing on social housing waiting lists. Revenue generating measures, such as a tax on second properties, need be introduced to reduce competition from investors in housing markets and reduce the upward pressure on house prices. 


“The scheme proposed by the Labour Party would be a gross misuse of public money and would channel even more money into the pockets of the wealthy developers who have creamed off huge profits from the increases in house prices over the last decade.


“What is needed is a robust package of intervention measures that will reduce house price inflation and curb the appetites of private developers and anti-social speculators, together with measures to increase the social housing stock, and stringent regulation of the private rented sector.”





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