Sinn Fein attacks ‘paltry’ Government housing targets

Eoin Ó Broin told the Dáil on Thursday that a recent report suggested that house prices will only increase into the future.
Sinn Fein attacks ‘paltry’ Government housing targets

By Dominic McGrath, PA

Sinn Féin has attacked the Government’s record on housing, warning that it is presiding over a housing system set to remain unaffordable.

Eoin Ó Broin told the Dáil on Thursday that a recent report suggested that house prices will only increase into the future, despite recent Government policies.

“Your housing policy is a failure,” he told Tánaiste Leo Varadkar.

“Under your watch, fewer working people than ever before can put a roof over their heads.”

The Sinn Féin housing spokesman was referring to media reports citing a study by professional services firm KPMG which predicted that residential property prices in Dublin could rise by 25 per cent over the next seven years.

“Do you and the Government accept the findings of the significant KPMG report? And what are you going to do that you’re not already proposing that would bring house prices down so that working people can afford to put a roof over their heads in the capital in the years to come?”

He called on the Government to increase investment in affordable homes and called current housing targets “paltry”.

Mr Vardkar, who said he has not yet read the report, said: “I’m not sure whether that report is predictive or not, but it doesn’t have to be.

“House prices in Ireland are too high and out of reach for too many people.

“Supply on its own will not bring down house prices, but we will not bring down house prices without supply.

“We need additional supply because of the huge deficit of housing we have in Ireland.”

Mr Varadkar said all types of housing are required, including one-bedroom and two-bedroom homes.

He also defended the Government’s controversial help-to-buy scheme and promised that a new shared equity scheme will also help anyone hoping to buy a home.

He said the Government is overseeing 10,000 new social homes being provided every year and called this a “step change”.

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