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Help-To-Buy Incentive Scheme Is To Be Examined

The current Irish Minister for Housing, Mr Eoghan Murphy, has acknowledged that he will be reviewing the Rebuilding Ireland housing strategy, which could see “The help-to-buy incentive”, geared to encourage first time home buyers, scrapped.

The scheme was first introduced by Fine Gael in last October’s budget, to encourage and enabled first time buyers of new build properties.  Basically, if you were a first-time buyer who either bought or self-built a new residential property between the 19th July 2016 and 31st December 2019, you were entitled to claim a refund of income tax and DIRT paid over the previous 4 tax years.

This new scheme’s introduction now appears to indicate that rather than helping to encourage building, the scheme has in fact pushed existing house prices to reach dizzier heights.

Fears justifiably now exist that if this new scheme were to be cancelled, the effects could cause an even further price amplification; suggesting that the Housing Minister will most likely focus his attentions on how to increase the supply of building stock; latter a strategy which has failed dismally, despite incentives.

It should be remembered that according to the 2016 census, held on the 24th April last year (2016), some 183,000 vacant homes exists around the country, while some 8,000 people continue to reside in emergency accommodation.

Surely it would have been cheaper to pay incentives to 8,000 people to move out of our over-crowded cities, and take up residence in the pure air of our Irish villages and smaller towns, while also partially replenishing our rural population, latter forced to take the boat to find work.

By giving €10,000 and a social house to each family currently residing in emergency accommodation; Mr Murphy can indeed be assured that the promise by former Minister Mr Simon Coveney, (“All homeless families in Dublin will be moved out of hotel accommodation by 1st July 2017.”), will in truth be met by at least the date of August 31st.

Remember Fianna Fáil’s attempts at the movement of departments and power away from a single administrative centre; to other locations. It was called ‘Decentralization’, so why not apply this idea to those forced to reside in over priced emergency accommodation? Remember we are talking about people without homes, not unsackable Civil Servants and their Unions seeking outrageous relocation payments.

But of course it is so important that we do not upset Ireland’s bankers and property developers, after all they have been so considerate of the Irish people!

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3 comments to Help-To-Buy Incentive Scheme Is To Be Examined

  • Chris

    Another idea would be for Dublin City Council and others to build houses in major towns along the M7/8 like Thurles, Portlaoise and Nenagh. It would cost a lot less to build houses in these towns. Give existing tenants a cash incentive of between €10000-20000 to move to brand new accommodation in these towns. Guaranteed school placements. A clause barring them from reapplying to DCC for a period of 10 years. Maintenance, rent collection and repairs contracted out to Tipperary County Council etc. This could dramatically reduce the number of people waiting for social housing and bring in revenue for not only Tipp Co Co but businesses in these towns. Increasing population centres will also increase social funding.

  • George Willoughby

    I totally agree Chris.

  • Rory Mac Mahon

    There would also need to be a serious investment in job creation and public transport in the towns along the M7/8. Living somewhere like Thurles or Nenagh and commuting to Dublin for work is not sustainable in the long run.

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