Clúid response to the Housing Action Plan

Following publication of the Governments Housing Action Plan, Simon Brooke, Clúid’s Head of Policy, said this afternoon, “This strategy represents a large step forward.  We particularly welcome:

  • The social housing target of 47,000 new homes by 2021.  As with any plan, particularly one such as this, which involves a large number of stakeholders, the key issue is delivery.  We believe that this ambitious target can be achieved, but only if all stakeholders put their shoulder to the wheel;
  • A renewed commitment to mixed tenure developments, especially on State-owned lands;
  • A review of the Mortgage-to-Rent scheme which prevents homelessness by enabling people in serious difficulties with their mortgage to stay in the own home, as tenants rather than owners.  This scheme has been extremely disappointing and is in need of major surgery if it is to realise its objectives.

However there are a few areas of disappointment:

  • Clúid believes that the Part V provision of reserving 10% of new housing developments should be increased to 20% social housing and 10% affordable housing.  This is a large missed opportunity to develop more social housing in mixed tenures;
  • Affordable rental housing, which aims to provide rental housing for people who cannot afford market rents, but may not be eligible for social housing – the “squeezed middles” – has the potential to hugely change the housing landscape.  However the reference to affordable rental is frustratingly brief and vague;
  • The plan commits to make the tenant purchase scheme “more attractive to tenants”.  This is deeply worrying.  Selling off State assets at a discount results in less social housing, and the State loses money.”

Comments are closed.