Dáil unexpectedly passes Sinn Féin motion on affordable housing

Dáil Unexpectedly Passes Sinn Féin Motion On Affordable Housing Dáil Unexpectedly Passes Sinn Féin Motion On Affordable Housing
Minister for Housing Darragh O'Brien leaving the Convention Centre in Dublin following a Dáil session. Photo: PA
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The Dáil has unexpectedly passed a Sinn Féin motion on affordable housing after the Government apparently failed to vote on its own countermotion.

The Sinn Féin motion, which is non-binding, calls for affordable housing to be delivered with a maximum cost in Dublin of €230,000 and less outside the capital and with monthly rental costs of €700 to €900.

It also called for capital investment to be doubled with €2.8 billion spending on public housing every year with 20,000 affordable homes constructed annually.

The Government apparently failed to move its own countermotion, no vote was recorded and the Sinn Féin motion was passed.

The single most important thing the Government can do to address the housing crisis is to “dramatically increase capital investment”, the Dáil was told.

Sinn Féin housing spokesman Eoin Ó Broin said that to make a serious dent in the affordable housing crisis the Government must spend €2.8 billion annually to build 20,000 social and affordable homes each year for the next five years.


The structure of financing and delivery should be based on an average purchase price in Dublin of €230,000 and less elsewhere with average rent of between €700 and €900 a month.

Government policy, he said “has allowed big investors to swallow up increasing volumes of limited supply of family homes, denying thousands of people from owning their own homes and forcing them to rent at extortionate prices well into the future”.

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Minister of State Peter Burke told TDs €620 million has been made available for affordability measures and homes will range from €160,000-€310,000.

Local authority-led direct build affordable housing “will be the central plank of the Government’s plans”, he stressed.

Labour TD Duncan Smith said there was huge anger out in the community which would continue and the crisis meant that a lost generation for whom home ownership was out of reach, was in danger of becoming two lost generations.

Social Democrats housing spokesman Cian O’Callaghan that what was lost in determining policy “is a realisation of the huge human cost that housing unaffordability has” and the heartrending stress and anxiety it causes.

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