Tuesday, 5 March 2019

Questions (590, 594, 595)

Eoin Ó Broin

Question:

590. Deputy Eoin Ó Broin asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government the number of units funded under the social housing current expenditure programme, SHCEP, at the end of 2018, in tabular form; the number of units that will end in the ownership of an approved housing body, AHB, or local authority; the annual cost of these leases in 2018; the number of units that will remain in the ownership of private interests; and the annual cost of these leases in 2018. [10498/19]

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Eoin Ó Broin

Question:

594. Deputy Eoin Ó Broin asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government the type of leases used in SHCEP leases of privately owned units; the length of time of the lease or range of times in use; if the leases allow the owner to withdraw from the lease before its due date; if so the grounds for same; whether the leases include an option to buy; and if so, the point at which such options can be included. [10575/19]

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Eoin Ó Broin

Question:

595. Deputy Eoin Ó Broin asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government the number of social housing current expenditure programme, SHCEP, leases brought on stream each year since the funding schemes inception by those units permanently in private ownership and those that will end up in the ownership of local authorities and approved housing bodies; and the annual cost of each category of lease. [10576/19]

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Written answers (Question to Housing)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 590, 594 and 595 together.

The Social Housing Current Expenditure Programme (SHCEP) supports the delivery of social housing by providing financial support to local authorities for the leasing of houses and apartments. Dwellings under the scheme come from a number of different sources including private owners, Approved Housing Bodies (AHBs), Part V and the NAMA Special Purpose Vehicle (NARPS).

Long term lease arrangements, including the enhanced lease, of privately owned dwellings can be entered into by either local authorities or AHBs. Under these arrangements the local authority or AHB acts as the landlord to the tenant. The terms of these agreements are set out in standard template agreements provided by my Department which must be used by all local authorities and AHBs. Agreements may be entered into for periods of between 10 to 25 years in duration; availability agreements under the CALF scheme can be up to 30 years in duration. There are no break clauses provided for in the lease and there are only limited circumstances in which the lease can be terminated by either party. These relate to the performance of the obligations set out in the lease clauses, e.g. a local authority can terminate a lease where the property is uninhabitable due to fire or flood damage; an owner can terminate a lease where the rent is not paid by the local authority.  

Under the long term leasing arrangement, the dwelling can be sold by the owner during the lease term, subject to the leasehold interest and the consent of the local authority or AHB. As such, the owner of the property changes but the lease, and the tenant, are unaffected. There is no option to purchase the property under the long term lease or enhanced lease arrangements; however, an option to purchase may have been included in some long term leases by local authorities in the early stages of the leasing programme. It is a matter for each local authority if they wish to purchase the property at the end of the lease term, should it become available to buy. 

Local authorities may also enter into availability arrangements with private owners whereby an owner makes their property available to tenants of the local authority for a defined period. Under this type of arrangement, the owner of the property acts as the landlord to the tenant and performs all the landlord obligations. These agreements are for periods of between 1 to 10 years and termination of the agreement is governed by the provisions of the Residential Tenancies Act 2004 (as amended). There is no option to purchase the property in these agreements; however, as with the long term lease, it is a matter for each local authority if they wish to purchase the property at the end of the lease term, should it become available to buy. 

Of the total number of dwellings supported under SHCEP at end 2018, 36% (or 4,210) were owned by a private owner and leased by either an AHB or a LA. The remaining dwellings funded under SHCEP at end 2018 are either owned by AHBs (36% or 4,195 dwellings) or by local authorities and NARPS (28% or 3,279 dwellings). Details of the total number of dwellings funded under SHCEP at end 2018, by ownership, and cost of each category of ownership in 2018 (a breakdown for prior years is not readily available), are set out in Tables 1 and 2.

Table 1: Total operational dwellings supported under SHCEP 2018

 Year

Private   Ownership 

LA   Ownership

AHB   Ownership 

NARPS 

TOTAL 

 End 2018

4,210

2,049

4,195

1,230

11,684

Table 2: SHCEP Spend 2018 

Year 

Private Ownership

LA Ownership

AHB Ownership

NARPS

TOTAL 

2018

€33,472,522

€7,112,669

€46,312,548 

€12,126,909 

€99,024,648*

 * Excludes administrative costs. The total SHCEP spend for 2018 was €100,392,780. This figure represents the ongoing contractual commitments of existing leases and availability arrangements at end 2017 together with the phased cost of new commitments that came into SHCEP in 2018.

Details of the dwellings included in each category of ownership are set out as follows:

- Private Ownership: dwellings secured by AHBs and local authorities under long term leases and availability arrangements; Part V leases (excluding NARPS Part V); the Repair and Leasing Scheme.

- LA Ownership: unsold affordable dwellings tenanted by social housing tenants and funded under the SHCEP.

- AHB Ownership: dwellings owned by AHBs including those that have benefited from an element of capital funded support, including CALF, MTR and the Housing Agency Acquisitions (HAA) programme.

- NARPS: dwellings leased to AHBs and local authorities from the NAMA SPV – NARPS.

Data in respect of additional dwellings delivered each year from 2014 to 2018 is set out in Table 3. Data in the format requested is not available before 2014.

 Table 3: Dwellings delivered 2014-2018

 Year

Private Ownership 

LA Ownership

AHB Ownership 

NARPS 

TOTAL 

 2014

504 

89 

352 

120 

1,065 

 2015

518 

96 

430 

433 

1,477 

 2016

503 

637 

218 

1,358 

 2017

502

6

1,344

374 

2,226 

 2018

754

1

2,463

107 

3,325