TAOISEACH Micheál Martin has welcomed news that housing supply is on track to exceed the 2022 Housing for All target of 24,600 new homes.
Mr Martin was speaking on Friday at the launch of Cork’s first cost rental housing scheme, a day after new Central Statistics Office figures showed home completions climbed 20,807 during the first three quarters of the year, surpassing the total for the whole of 2021.
Under the Government’s Housing for All programme, an average of 33,000 properties per year are to be developed by 2030.
The Taoiseach said he welcomed the CSO figures as good news, saying the increase in completions had come despite inflationary pressures caused by the war in Ukraine.
“The Central Statistics Office figures yesterday do objectively show that progress has been made in terms of building new homes in the country, and it could be up to 26 or 27,000 or even more this year, which is ahead of target,” Mr Martin said.
The Taoiseach made his remarks at the opening of Cork’s first cost rental scheme, Lancaster Gate, which is located at Lancaster Quay.
The scheme comprises of 88 apartments, 73 of which are cost rental homes, and 15 of which are social homes.
All of the homes, which are one- and two-bedroom properties, have been allocated, with the first cost rental residents moving in from Friday.
Under the Government’s cost rental scheme, cost rents must be a minimum of 25% below open market values.
Monthly rent for housing charity Clúid’s Lancaster Gate homes are 45% below local market rates, with one-bed apartments renting for €990 per month and two-bed apartments for €1,100 per month.
Eligible applicants had to have a net household income below €53,000 per annum, could not have an existing home ownership, had to be able to pay the cost rent, and could not be in receipt of any social housing supports.
Applications far exceeded availability, with over 1,200 applying for the 73 cost rental properties.
The successful applications were selected at random.
Mr Martin said he hoped Lancaster Gate would be the first of many cost rental schemes in Cork, noting that a further scheme of 32 homes is due to open in Glanmire.
“Housing remains the greatest social issue facing us,” the Taoiseach said.
The development opened on the day it was announced that a record 10,975 people were recorded as homeless in the month of September.