Government must breach EU fiscal rules to fund building of more homes

November 6, 2017

The projected €3 billion Government spend in rent subsidies over the next five years represents an unsustainable approach to solving the housing crisis, Social Democrats co-leader Catherine Murphy TD said today.

Deputy Murphy said:

“Official projections show that the Government will spend some €535 million on rent support programmes this year for lower-income families in the private rental sector who are awaiting social housing. Over the next five years, the total amount will be more than €3 billion – that’s a 25 per cent increase on the previous five-year period.

“These are subsidies that go to the private rental sector and the more the Government spends on them, the less it has to spend on actually building social housing for people who need it. Clearly, the government cannot continue indefinitely to subsidise more and more social housing tenants in private rental accommodation. Relying on the market to deliver a permanent solution to the housing crisis is just not sustainable.

“The government needs to start building homes in the large quantities needed so it can directly provide social housing to those who need it. It must bite the bullet and breach EU fiscal rules which are a clear constraint when it comes to the kinds of capital programmes that would provide permanent solutions for people, not temporary stop-gaps.”


6 November 2017