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Budget measures could see 35,000 new homes a year – CIF

The supply of new homes here could reach the required 35,000 per annum within years, as a result of initiatives announced in Budget 2021, the Construction Industry Federation (CIF) says.

It estimates that 9,000 homes could be built through the new affordability scheme announced by the Government yesterday.

These would otherwise not have been constructed without the plan the federation states.

“The Minister’s proposals if implemented at a local level could take thousands of couples out of the housing affordability trap over the next three years,” said James Benson, Director of Housing and Planning at the CIF.

“This suite of measures could put housing supply on a steady and sustainable trajectory and finally bring an end to the housing crisis within reach.”

According to the CIF, a mortgage for an average priced home is out of reach of many couples, as they would need a combined income of €94,000 to secure one. 

Estimates for the number of houses to be completed this year vary, but some say it could be as low as 15,000, rising higher next year.

The Central Bank estimates 34,000 new homes must be built every year for ten years to meet demand.

Meanwhile, the Minister for Housing Darragh O’Brien said funding for new and affordable and cost rental housing schemes will produce 2,400 homes.

The Minister was giving details of €110 million in funding announced in yesterday’s budget.

He said that €35 million will go on providing 400 cost rental homes and €75 million for 2,000 affordable units from next year.

Neither scheme has been finalised but Mr O’Brien said that legislation will be brought to the Dáil before Christmas to set up an affordable purchase scheme involving shared equity where the government or financial institutions will provide extra finance.

It is understood that the money to be provided could be around 5-10% of the purchase price aimed at those whose credit is short of market prices for new builds.

The scheme had to be approved at EU level and by the Central Bank here under state aid and borrowing rules but the Minister’s announcement has been welcomed by the Banking and Payments Federation.

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