A SENIOR official with Cork County Council said in the region of 3,000 current social housing units in Co Cork will require retrofitting in the future.
Cork County Council head of housing Maurice Manning revealed this projected figure at yesterday’s southern committee meeting of the local authority.
Mr Manning said the retrofitting project would take up to a decade to complete and would be dependent on funding being made available.
“I don’t have an exact number for the number of houses that need retrofitting, but it is probably 3,000 or more,” he said. “It is a 10-year programme.
“The funding that is available may increase over that 10-year period, but there is a question about any local authority’s capacity to meet the demand for retrofitting projects.”
The head of housing said priority would be given to the housing stock that was in the most urgent need of upgrading.
“We will be prioritising those that are most in need,” he said.
“A lot of properties would have had energy efficiency works carried out over recent years that would maybe not have brought them to the B rating but would still require further retrofitting to bring them up, so they won’t be the priority in the short term.
“We are certainly looking at possibly 3,000 or more current social housing units that will need to benefit from the programme over time.”
In response to a query from Fianna Fáil councillor Seamus McGrath concerning the council’s policy of competing with other buyers when acquiring properties, which led Mr McGrath to seek clarity on Cork County Council’s official position, Mr Manning said the council would not be “competing” with first-time buyers.
“In relation to acquisitions, there was a relaxation on the part of the department in relation to single house acquisitions,” Mr Manning said.
“At the beginning of the year there was no acquisition programme other than for specific need.
“That has now been relaxed. It is not the case that we will be competing with first-time buyers in relation to any properties. That doesn’t happen and it won’t happen.”