Social housing is a very critical element of the Irish housing market, and it is important to meet the demand for quality and new properties. Social housing relieves pressure on the private market by providing long term solutions for families that have lower incomes compared to the rest of society, rather than depending on renting homes from the private market to meet these needs.
Thanks to the foresight of the Irish Government in designating social housing as essential, it is normal to assume the delivery of similar numbers in 2021. This is also very good considering the effect of the pandemic on the marketplace. While the scale of required housing output is up for debate, the need for the delivery of new homes to the market and for social housing is not. The assumption that the public/AHB sector has the capacity to deliver all required social housing, is not realistic at present. The delivery of much-needed social and affordable housing needs to be a collaboration between the private and public sector to achieve the scale required.
Leaving institutional investors/developers aside, there are many small to medium sized developers across the country delivering social housing for AHBs and local authorities. The local developers encourage local employment, support local businesses, and deliver small housing schemes between 4 and 40 homes. This also serves to support a better social mix in many areas.
These small developers/builders take on the high risk of purchasing land, bring the project through the planning process and then offer the homes to the public sector. The quantity of stakeholders and processes involved in delivering social housing represents a challenge for any small developer brave enough to enter into this market.
Once people become comfortable with this, they become valuable repeat business partners that deliver a wide variety of homes across the Republic of Ireland. It is important to consider that Ireland’s cities are home to 85 percent of jobs, but only 65 percent of residents. These small builders/developers are a very critical element of the housing market as well as the wider economy.
There is a very good understanding of the cost of production of apartments and houses across major cities and smaller commuter towns. It is interesting to see how the investor and developer market shakes out for the remainder of 2021, especially with the pandemic vaccination looming. If you are looking for options through quality mortgage brokers, look into yes.ie for great answers to any problems in the process you may intercept.
Written by John Spurrier, Mortgage Analyst for Online Application