Housing a big issue in General Election 2016

Housing a big issue in General Election 2016

Now that the General Election has been called there are sure to be plenty of issues debated between now and polling day in three weeks’ time.

As ever, there are many pressing matters in the country with housing being amongst them.

Already the likes of Labour have offered to assist first-time buyers buy a home but staying away from auction politics there are serious issues that need to be addressed.

Homelessness is certainly one of them with far too many men, women and children remaining on our streets.

The housing lists in local authority areas are also far too big, with waits of up to a decade for accommodation. The fact these lists grew by 2% in the last two months shows the problem is worsening rather than getting better.

Then, of course, there is also the rental problem. While steps were taken last year to calm the rise of rents, it is still a major issue and the size of rents at present – particularly in urban areas – means that those renting cannot afford to save for the type of deposit needed to meet the Central Bank’s mortgage lending rules.

With the monthly cost of rent now quite often much more than the monthly cost of servicing a mortgage, surely it is time that people’s rental payments be factored in when they are applying for a mortgage?

This issue was raised by Fianna Fáil’s Michael McGrath last month with Central Bank Governor Philip Lane insisting he would look at it.

He told TDs: “A track record of paying rent has to be relevant when paying a mortgage.”

These and other issues will be important regardless of what way the next Government is made up. They are problems that aren’t going to go away in a hurry but one which our current and future political representatives need to be aware of.

Have your say on the General Election in the comments below…

  • What are the key housing issues for you?
  • Is there a fast track solution to homelessness?
  • Should rental payments be counted when applying for a mortgage?
There are 7 comments for this article
  1. Pingback: Housing a big issue in General Election 2016 - Charlene Patton AuctioneersCharlene Patton Auctioneers
  2. Peadar MacMillan. at 6:05 pm

    A new – for life – high standard 3 bed house – semi dethatched in Dublin could be built and sold on at a decent profit for around 160k – How ???
    1. Compulsory purchase orders for land for development { As Irish water are doing currently}.
    2. Waive all fees from new connections charged by Bord Gais – ESB – County Councils.
    3. Ensure the builders are not connected to any political party – so our young starter families are not ripped off – as has happened previously.
    4. Invite builders from abroad in – if they can build for less but to the same standard.
    5. Bring back decent grant for first time buyers and tax free allowances for children.
    6. Put non political director over Irish banks and ensure new buyers are given a fair deal on a mortgage – banks need to make profits sure – but not extortion.
    I am in contact with many builders and have been in the business previously – we know how much labour and materials cost – you could work it out in about two hours on a piece of paper. Simple maths.
    Peadar MacMillan.

    • Rita at 7:02 pm

      Well said Peadar every point you raise makes sense but I fear that “vested interests” will ensure this does not happen

    • Peter Grant at 8:46 pm

      You want a state subsidy to cover land and utilities for people who live in Dublin..? is that fair to people down the country ? or are you saying that the state should provide all lands and services at subsidized rates for all in the country.

  3. Peter Grant at 3:40 pm

    The problem cannot begin to be resolved until house prices move above replacement values by 10% or more. This is the key to new supply.
    Until this changes there is no facility for anyone to renovate or build new stock.

    The solution should be on all fronts now that we recognize the mess that has been created by this government.

    1. Increase rent allowance and remove taxation from landlords who own one or two houses so that they become sustainable. Rent allowance should be graded to reward renters who are gold star clients.

    2. Increase loan ratio’s to one to four short term until prices reach reach replacement values, create function in market.

    3. Credit rentals in assessment of deposit ability.

    4. Under no circumstances should third party Corporate investors be introduced to a dominant position in the Irish housing market. this would prevent future Irish families from owning their own property and enslave Irish people long term.

    5. All new social housing should be designed to a standard that would make people proud to live in them and be energy efficient.

    6. If we are not willing to take the steps listed we should prepare to drop our expectations of living one house per family.

    • Jac at 8:53 am

      Very thoughtful. I just wonder how the brain of the polictians work, they won’t listen.

      • Peter Grant at 10:31 am

        Its not just politicians you need to consider, after all they think they are on a photo shoot, You should listen to the ones writing their script, Its the head of the housing authority that we need to focus on…and if he has his way we will see another transfer of wealth out of this country.. in the guise of solving a housing problem.

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