Capital funding is provided to local authorities to acquire a range of properties for social housing use. The properties involved can range from those in good condition to those that need remediation and may have been vacant. To ensure a local-led response to such work, responsibility for property acquisitions is delegated to local authorities.
To further assist local authorities pursuing vacant properties, the Buy & Renew Scheme makes funding available to facilitate local authorities in acquiring and remediating vacant properties that may be suitable for social housing. To date, while Donegal County Council has not sought funding from my Department under the scheme, they have acquired vacant properties and carried out the necessary upgrading works, under the standard social housing acquisition programme. These houses have then been let to individuals and families on the local authority's waiting list.
I understand that Donegal County Council intends to continue to pursue opportunities to deliver new social housing through acquiring and remediating vacant properties and will utilise the Buy & Renew Scheme for this purpose. The Council also uses other opportunities to tackle vacancy and deliver new social housing such as the completion of unfinished estates.