In a housing crisis, why is Cork County Council selling a Douglas house for €84,000?

In a housing crisis, why is Cork County Council selling a Douglas house for €84,000?

Councillor Deirdre Forde at the boarded up house in Douglas West, which is listed at just €84,000. Picture: Eddie O’Hare

COUNTY HALL has been asked to explain why it is selling a house in the heart of Douglas Village for just €84,000.

The house, at 17a Douglas West, is listed on the local authority’s ‘disposal of property’ list but councillors in the Ballincollig-Carrigaline municipal district have blocked the sale pending more information from County Council officials.

Several councillors expressed their confusion as to why the Council was selling off the property in the midst of a housing crisis and also queried the valuation of the property in the heart of a desirable area.

Deirdre Forde (FG) said the property could be retained and used to house an elderly person. “Why are we not housing people there or upgrading the property?” she asked.

“For years I have fought for about eight houses in Douglas West, right across the road from this. They were vacant for years and I begged the Council to take them on board and make them available for older people.”

Cllr Forde added: “I could not get an answer on whether they were vacant, derelict or owned by someone.

“All of a sudden four of them changed hands for €200,000-plus.

“Right across the road we have this house going for €84,000. There is something wrong there, the disparity is too great for me.

“When the Council finally decided to go after those houses, they told me they were too dear.

“This one should have been taken on board for an elderly person,” she added.

Mary Rose Desmond (FF) said the Council should look at upgrading the home to provide much-needed accommodation for a single person.

“One of the areas that is hardest fought with regard to housing are single individuals — some single people are waiting 10 to 12 years because we stopped building houses that were suitable for them.

“Even if it cost €100,000 to do it up that would not be bad money to spend.”

Municipal district officer Kevin O’Regan told councillors that he would revert back to the housing directorate for clarity on the circumstances around the property.

He added that an auctioneer had valued the property on behalf of the Council.

County Hall has been contacted for comment.

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