Tuesday, 24 November 2020

Questions (57)

Mick Barry


57. Deputy Mick Barry asked the Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage if he will increase the number of houses built through direct build local authority construction in view of the large difference in the cost between local authority direct builds and so called turn-key purchases; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [38333/20]

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Written answers (Question to Housing)

The advancement of social housing delivery on a local basis is the responsibility of each individual local authority and they seek to secure the maximum amount of social housing through a range of approaches that represent value for money, speed of delivery and that meet the needs of those on the waiting lists.

The Programme for Government commits to increasing the social housing stock by more than 50,000, the majority of which will be new build social homes by local authorities. Significant funding is available to all local authorities to help bolster their social housing stock and in Budget 2021, the total funding for the delivery of housing programmes is €3.3 billion.

The delivery of local authority-own designed projects on their own sites has been increasing as a proportion of overall social housing delivery and in addition, many local authorities have worked successfully with the construction sector to source delivery of new social homes through turnkey solutions.

Turnkey developments can represent good value for money and can help deal with other issues such as unfinished estates. Ultimately, the homes delivered are newly constructed and become permanent social housing. They are particularly beneficial where local authorities have limited or no lands available to deliver housing in the immediate term in an area of high demand.

Across all local authorities, and all unit types the choice between local authority-led projects and turnkeys needs to be evaluated taking account of factors such as location, house types, specification, abnormal costs, site costs, etc.

Moving forward, in line with the Programme for Government, the majority of the 50,000 new social homes will be new build social homes by local authorities.

Question No. 58 answered with Question No. 56.