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Under 6,000 new social houses built in 2019 as government misses target again

Just 5,771 new builds were delivered to the government last year.

Image: Sam Boal/RollingNews.ie

THE GOVERNMENT HAS revealed that fewer than 6,000 new social houses were built in 2019, falling short of the target under Rebuilding Ireland for the second year running.

New figures from the Department of Housing show that 5,771 new builds were delivered last year, with 2,271 by local authorities and 2,174 by Approved Housing Bodies (AHBs).

A further 1,326 units were delivered through the Part V scheme, whereby 10% of land zoned for private developments is earmarked for social and affordable housing.

The overall figure falls short of the target for 6,545 units of new social housing set out in Rebuilding Ireland for 2019.

However, there was an increase in the number of houses built in 2018, when 4,811 units were delivered. The target for the same year was 4,969 new builds. 

The data also shows that 1,161 new social housing units were delivered through the social housing leasing scheme, 2,772 were acquired via banks’ investment or loan portfolios, and 303 were brought back into use through the renovation of vacant houses.

Sinn Féin’s housing spokesman Eoin Ó Broin said that Rebuilding Ireland had “consistently failed” to meet the demands of the Oireachtas Committee on Housing and Homelessness.

He pointed to a report by the cross-party committee report in 2016, which called for 10,000 social homes owned by local authorities and AHBs to be delivered every year for five years.

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“Four years in and Fine Gael are still more than 16% short of this crucial target,” Ó Broin said.

“This is why housing need continues to rise and the homeless crisis continues to spiral out of control.”

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