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Social and Affordable Housing Eligibility

Dáil Éireann Debate, Tuesday - 2 May 2017

Tuesday, 2 May 2017

Ceisteanna (445, 466)

Brendan Smith

Ceist:

445. Deputy Brendan Smith asked the Minister for Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government if family income supplement will be excluded from the assessment of income for social housing; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [19469/17]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Robert Troy

Ceist:

466. Deputy Robert Troy asked the Minister for Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government if he will revise the thresholds for inclusion on the social housing list (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [19847/17]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Housing)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 445 and 466 together.

The Social Housing Assessment Regulations 2011 prescribe maximum net income limits for each housing authority, in different bands according to the area, 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. The limits also reflect 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 and thereby promote sustainable communities.

Under the Household Means Policy, which applies in all housing authorities, net income for social housing assessment is defined as gross household income less income tax, PRSI and the universal social charge. Most payments received from the Department of Social Protection are assessable, including Family Income Supplement. The Policy provides for a range of income disregards, and housing authorities also have discretion to decide to disregard income that is temporary, short-term or once off.

A review of the income eligibility limits for social housing supports as part of the broader social housing reform agenda set out in the Social Housing Strategy 2020 is scheduled to commence later this year.

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