Housing Minister: Irish Water type body for housing 'not going to happen', responsibility 'stays with me'

The Housing Minister Eoghan Murphy has ruled out creating another Irish Water type body to solve the country's housing crisis.

Mr Murphy says the suggestion, which was mooted last week, to create another State agency to build social housing is not actually under consideration.

Minister Murphy says we need to face up to the homelessness problem as a society and find radical solutions.

He is insisting the Government is trying to get organisations already in place to work more closely together.

He said: "The idea that we are going to create a semi-state, like Irish Water, it's not going to happen.

"And even if it were going to happen, I don't think we'd have communicated it in the way that it was communicated.

"Responsibility for housing has to remain with me in the department and with the Government and Cabinet, and it will."

The housing crisis has also sparked concerns about vulture funds forcing people out of their homes.

There has been a ten-fold increase in the number of debt enforcement cases they have taken in the High Court, meaning that more than 500 homeowners have been threatened with eviction so far this year.

David Hall of the Irish Mortgage Holders Association says the Government needs to step in.

Mr Hall said: "We need to be very, very clear. If somebody is eligible for social housing, if they have an income at the stage of eligibility for social housing, they need to be allowed to stay in their home.

"Ownership needs to be relinquished, but they need to stay in their home, and the vulture fund can be paid for that house."

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