Tuesday, 5 February 2019

Ceisteanna (655)

Mary Lou McDonald


655. Deputy Mary Lou McDonald asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government the work he is undertaking to develop schemes in respect of cost rental and affordable housing; and when details in relation to same will be published. [5194/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Housing)

A multi-stranded approach is being taken to the targeted delivery of affordable housing, in particular for those households earning up to €50,000 for single income households and €75,000 for dual income households.

As part of that approach, I commenced the relevant provisions of Part 5 of the Housing (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2009 last year to provide a statutory basis for the delivery of affordable housing for purchase; regulations in relation to the scheme will be made shortly. In addition, a new Rebuilding Ireland Home Loan was introduced on 1 February 2018, under which home loans, at affordable, fixed rates over the term of the loan can be made available to credit worthy home purchasers meeting the above income limits.

In order to support local authorities in delivering affordable homes, €310 million will be made available from 2019 until 2021 under the Serviced Site Fund (SSF). The (SSF) will fund facilitating infrastructure, on local authority sites. At a maximum funding rate of €50,000 per affordable home, at least 6,200 will be facilitated in total.

On foot of a first call for proposals which issued to local authorities in Dublin, the Greater Dublin Area, Cork and Galway City, approval issued for ten projects costing €43m, which will support 1,400 affordable homes, in December 2018. Infrastructure works on these projects will begin as soon as possible and delivery of affordable homes is anticipated from early 2020 onwards. Five other projects submitted are still under active consideration and my Department is working with the local authorities concerned to progress them.

A second call for proposals will issue shortly. In order to inform that process all local authorities wishing to be considered for funding have been asked to submit economic assessments of the requirement and potential to deliver affordable homes from their sites.

The Government is also committed to the introduction of a not-for-profit, cost rental sector in Ireland. Together with delivering more affordable and predictable rents, cost rental will make a sustainable impact on national competitiveness and the attractiveness of our main urban centres as places to live and work. It is estimated by the National Development Finance Agency (NDFA) that rents of between 15-25% below market are achievable.

There are currently two cost rental projects at Enniskerry Road, in Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown and St. Michael’s Estate, Inchicore, which will deliver 50 and 330 cost rental homes, respectively. The experience on these projects will inform a national cost rental framework under which similar projects will be rolled out on a wider scale. My Department is engaged with the National Development Finance Agency, the European Investment Bank and the LDA to develop the optimum funding and delivery mechanisms to support cost rental delivery at scale in Dublin and other urban areas.