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Dublin: 16 °C Tuesday 11 August, 2020

€15 million loan allows Tuath purchase up to 190 vacant homes to rent to families all over Ireland

The purchases will be spread around the country, taking in every county and district in Ireland.

Image: Shutterstock/Rido

HOUSING BODY TUATH has received initial funding of up to €15 million to allow it buy vacant houses all over Ireland.

The funding, which comes from AIB Corporate Banking, will allow Tuath purchase up to 190 homes around the country.

The purchases will be spread around the country, taking in every county and district in Ireland. They will be rented to families who are on local authority housing lists.

The properties are vacant former rental units in need of repair. As part of the initiative, Tuath is refurbishing the properties, with the cost of the works being added to the cost of purchasing the property.

AIB is providing initial funding of €15 million towards the cost of the purchase and repair bill. The first tranche of money was used to complete the purchase and repair of 21 homes, with a range of houses and apartments spread from Dublin City, South Dublin, Donegal, Westmeath, Galway County and City, Kildare and Wexford.

Chairman of Túath Séamus Doherty said:

“It is essential that more public and voluntary sector homes are provided for those shut out of the housing market. More could be spent, and spent more effectively by channelling housing expenditure, raised via private finance, through housing associations.

“At a time when we have historically low borrowing rates, the country should be borrowing and building much more than we currently are. The AIB loan facility is an excellent example of how this can be achieved, effectively and efficiently.”

As part of the Rebuilding Ireland programme, the Housing Agency was provided with a €70m fund to acquire up to 1,600 vacant properties from financial institutions. It has already acquired a large number of houses and apartments, primarily from distressed sales. The proceeds from the sale of the properties to Tuath and other approved housing bodies will then be used again to acquire housing stock and commence the process once more.

John O’Connor of the Housing Agency said:

“We welcome today’s announcement by AIB. The Housing Agency have worked with a range of organisations to find ways of bringing vacant homes back into use.”

Overall, there are around 80,000 vacant homes in Ireland, with around 8,500 homeless people.

Read: Leo Varadkar has been criticised for calling houses starting at €315,000 ‘affordable’

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