Almost 1,000 properties in Co Cork have been registered by members of the public with www.vacanthomes.ie.
The county council is assessing the properties to determine if they are suitable for acquisition under the buy-and-renew scheme, which facilitates local authorities in repairing housing units that are then leased for social housing.
Of the 987 properties logged on the www.vacanthomes.ie website in Co Cork, the local authority has determined that 73 reports are duplicates and 58 of the sites are now being brought back into use by Cork County Council or the owner.
123 properties are being pursued under the buy-and-renew scheme and a further 60 buy-and-renew acquisitions have been completed.
Cork County Council senior executive officer, Seamus De Faoite, said: “We continue to go through the logged properties to see if there are any possibilities of providing social housing through these housing units.”
Mr De Faoite said the buy-and-renew scheme, along with the repair-and-lease scheme, would remain in use for the coming years, despite phasing out general acquisitions, as outlined in the Housing for All document.
“While general acquisitions are being phased out, buy-and-renew and repair-and-lease schemes remain to be key pillars of the Housing for All plan.
“The way the Government is looking at this is that the carbon footprint of doing up an existing unit is one 10th of building a new unit, so it mightn’t be a possibility for all properties, but there are opportunities. So vacant property is and remains a vibrant pipeline for the delivery of new social housing units for us.”
In terms of the next five years, by 2026, over 3,000 social housing homes are to be constructed in Co Cork.
In 2022, the local authority hopes to build 560 homes for social housing, followed by 622 in 2023, 636 in 2024, 683 in 2025, and 697 in 2026, totalling 3,198 homes within the five-year period.