Tuesday, 26 March 2019

Questions (1422, 1426)

Aindrias Moynihan

Question:

1422. Deputy Aindrias Moynihan asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government the status of the review of income limits for social housing; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13792/19]

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Joe Carey

Question:

1426. Deputy Joe Carey asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government when the review of income eligibility limits for social housing will be published; when sanction will be given to increased income limits with particular reference to County Clare in view of the fact that the limits are perceived to be very low; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [14049/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Housing)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 1422 and 1426 together.

The Social Housing Assessment Regulations 2011 prescribe maximum net income limits for each local authority, in different bands according to the area concerned, with income being defined and assessed according to a standard Household Means Policy.

The income bands and the authority area assigned to each band were based on an assessment of the income needed to provide for a household's basic needs, plus a comparative analysis of the local rental cost of housing accommodation across the country. It is important to note that the limits introduced at that time also reflected a blanket increase of €5,000 introduced prior to the new system coming into operation, in order to broaden the base from which social housing tenants are drawn, both promoting sustainable communities and also providing a degree of future-proofing.

As part of the broader social housing reform agenda, a review of income eligibility for social housing supports in each local authority area is underway. The Housing Agency is continuing to carry out the detailed statistical work, which will underpin this review, on behalf of my Department.

The review will also have regard to current initiatives being brought forward in terms of affordability and cost rental and will be completed when the impacts of these parallel initiatives have been considered.