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Severity of housing crisis exposed as not a single Family Home available in Limerick City

Sinn Féin Councillor Maurice Quinlivan has said that the severity of the housing crisis in Limerick City has been sharply exposed by the fact that the Council hasn’t a single three-bedroom home available for letting.

Addressing the reality that almost 4,000 people are now on the housing waiting list in the Metropolitan Area of Limerick, Councillor Maurice Quinlivan said;

“I understand that for the first time in its history the Council hasn’t a single three bedroom house available for letting. This means that families cannot be housed. In the first six months of 2015, 63 housing units in the whole of the Metropolitan area were allocated. Whilst every person housed is welcome, this will make little or no dent on the numbers on the list because it increases daily.

“We are in a deepening housing crisis. Thousands are on the housing list with little or no chance of getting housed. In 2005, the State built 4,209 social provision houses. In 2015 to date, in an escalating housing crisis, it has built only 499 across the entire state. There are now almost 4,000 people on the housing list in the City and that number is growing rapidly.

“The very significant issue of people in mortgage distress has added to the housing need in the city. This has created an even greater demand for housing in the private sector which, in addition to the demand for student accommodation in this University City, has created further pressure on an already crowded market.  All of this has exacerbated an already upward pressure on rents.”

Cllr. Quinlivan continued: “Because of the failure of the private market to provide affordable homes to own and to rent, many individuals and households have been pushed to join the local authority waiting lists. An immediate focus is required to tackle the unacceptable local authority waiting list at both ends.

“The top priority must be to address the needs of the most vulnerable, those in greatest need of accommodation. These people were well served by the local authority in the past. However, the state cannot continue neglecting those languishing at the bottom of the list who are just managing but will never have the option of escaping the private rental trap. We must have a housing strategy that delivers a holistic solution.

“We need action not words and fancy announcements. In Government, Sinn Féin would invest €1 billion from the Strategic Investment Fund to build 6,000 additional new homes in 2016.”