€15m renovation fund to turn vacant units into family homes welcomed

The Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore T.D., has welcomed today’s announcement by the Minister for Housing & Planning, Jan O’Sullivan, that 952 vacant local authority homes around Ireland are to be renovated under a €15m funding package.

“This funding will transform local authority units which have been out of use for long periods into good quality homes for families in need”, the Tánaiste said.

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“The additional units are being provided in areas which have a strong social housing demand. Not only it will see families being put in good homes, but it will also guarantee a rental income for local authority.

“Long-term vacant housing units cause a variety of problems for local communities, often becoming targets for anti-social behaviour, litter or dumping. Some communities have lived with these issues for far too long, and that is why it was imperative the Government take action by providing €15 million to return these vacant properties into good use once again.

“The provision of quality social housing is a priority issue for this Government, and this will continue to be the case during its lifetime. We are committed to improving and growing our social housing stock, and I must commend the Minister for Public Expenditure& Reform Brendan Howlin who worked with Minister of State O’Sullivan on this particular initiative.

“Today’s announcement is in addition to measures already undertaken by this Government in this area including a €30m spend this year to upgrade the energy efficiency of the least well-insulated local authority homes, and a €35 million housing investment for people with a disability, who are homeless or elderly.

“While a lot more work remains to be done to meet social housing demand in Ireland today, this announcement is a significant step forward and will go a long way towards putting a roof over the heads of hard-pressed families.”