Business Morning



Figures show long term cost of Fine Gael reliance on rental sector over direct build – O’Brien

PQs reveal average monthly cost of HAP State subsidised rent at €829 p/m while the national cost of new state-built home is €213,000

Please see attached PQ response

Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Housing, Planning and Local Government Darragh O’Brien has revealed that average Housing Assistance Payment rent levels will be costlier than building a new home after 21 years.

PQ data compiled by Deputy O’Brien looked at the average monthly rent across all four major current expenditure housing programmes and compared it to the cost of the state directly building homes.

It shows the state will spend over €844m on rent support in 2019 with average rents reaching from €829 per month under HAP to €521 per month under Rent Supplement. The average cost of building a new two-bedroom home nationally is €213,000.

It would take just 21 years of HAP payments to landlords to reach the cost of a direct new build home. Every year after that is more expensive to rent than to build.

Deputy O’Brien said: “Fine Gael have led an overreliance on the private sector, funnelling billions into landlords rather than building. The cost of this is evident in these figures.

“Paying for rent is not cheaper and in just over two decades it will cost more to rent than it would have to build a new unit that actually adds to the housing stock and is in state ownership. The short-term approach of Fine Gael will catch up on the state. We will be locked into expensive rental payments for decades rather than building up our national housing stock.

“We need to get Local Authorities back into direct build and shift away from pouring billions into the private sector. The Minister should take the shackles off Local Authorities and put bricks and mortar into the ground not billions into landlords’ pockets” Deputy O’Brien concluded.