Mr Eoghan Murphy, T.D., Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government, and An Cathaoirleach of Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council, Councillor Shay Brennan, turned the sod on the first ever Cost Rental development in the State at Enniskerry Road, Stepaside, Dublin on 10th September 2019.
At €1,200 per month for two bedroom apartments, starting rents will be significantly below current local open market rents. The rent will be based on the cost of building, managing and maintaining the homes
Cost Rental is housing where the rents charged cover the cost of delivering, managing and maintaining the homes. As the rent paid by the tenant in a Cost Rental tenancy is designed to only cover the actual costs, rents will not be driven by market movements. The groundbreaking project will deliver 105 social homes and 50 two-bedroom Cost Rental homes.
Respond and Tuath Housing Associations will be delivering the scheme in partnership with Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council on land provided by the Housing Agency under the Land Aggregation Scheme. This first Cost Rental pilot project under Rebuilding Ireland is the result of an innovative collaboration between Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council, the Housing Agency, the Housing Finance Agency, the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government, Respond and Tuath Housing Associations.
The overall development value of the 155 homes and the community facility is in the order of €55,000,000 including, construction works, design fees, development levies and VAT. The construction work was tendered on a competitive basis in accordance with EU procurement requirements.
Tenants will pay €1,200 per month to live in the 2-bedroom Cost Rental homes delivered as part of this project. The rent of €1,200 per month, which is based on the cost of delivering and maintaining the homes, is a significant reduction when compared to market rents for 2-bedroom apartments in this location. Funding is being provided through the Housing Finance Agency and the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government. The new homes will be delivered in 2021.
Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Eoghan Murphy T.D. commenting on this development said:
“I am very pleased to formally mark the commencement of construction on this important site. Not only will the project deliver the first 50 Cost Rental apartments in this new category of housing in Ireland, it will also provide 105 social housing homes as part of our ongoing efforts to meet ambitious targets in this sector. Cost Rental will provide affordable homes to middle and lower income earners at a cost to residents that is significantly below market rates. Work is underway within my Department and with a range of State agencies to complete a national policy framework for Cost Rental that will detail the optimum means of delivering units at scale, and set out the structures for its operation. This is both the first Cost Rental project to commence construction on a national basis. It is also the first project to receive funding under my Department’s innovative Serviced Sites Fund, which has made available € 310 million in grant funding for infrastructure works to support the provision of affordable housing. The lessons that will be learned through this pilot project will be important in helping to shape this model into the future. I would like to commend the work of Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council, the Housing Agency, Respond and Tuath, in getting the project to this stage, and am delighted to see such progress on the site to date.”
An Cathaoirleach of Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council, Cllr Shay Brennan speaking about the project said:
This project on Enniskerry Road delivers 155 much needed social and affordable homes with integrated community facilities. It is a landmark in both collaborative development and the first pilot nationally of a new Cost Rental model. The development was designed in house by the Councils Architect Department and will be constructed and managed by Respond and Tuath Housing Associations with the assistance of the Housing Agency and the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government. This Council is committed to directly delivering and also facilitating the delivery of innovative, high quality and award winning housing solutions for people in our community; like the recently completed Georges Place in Dún Laoghaire, Fitzgerald Park in Mountown and Rosemount in Dundrum. I have every confidence that this new project at Enniskerry Road will be a further high quality addition to housing stock in our area and I am delighted to be at the launch of the project.”
John O’Connor, CEO of the Housing Agency speaking about the role of the Housing Agency in the project said:
“The Housing Agency have put a lot of work into progressing this development and providing the land. The Agency as particularly supportive of having Cost Rental combined with the provision of social housing. We expect that this will be the first of many such Cost Rental developments in the future.”
Barry O’Leary, CEO of the Housing Finance Agency speaking about the project finance said:
“The HFA is very pleased to support this development on the Enniskerry Road, which will provide 155 new social and affordable homes in Dublin. The project is a new venture for the sector with two of the most active Approved Housing Bodies, Respond and Tuath, combining to deliver the first affordable scheme of this type in the country. The availability of low cost, long term fixed rate finance from the HFA was a vital component in making the project viable and the HFA will continue to support the strong growth in activity by approved housing bodies across the country as we work together to achieve the objectives set out in Rebuilding Ireland. “
John O’Connor, Chairperson of Respond Housing Association, said:
“We are very excited about this project and the Cost Rental homes it will deliver. This is only possible due to significant collaboration with all of our partners working hard together. This is a priority area of work for Respond as it is clear that some form of intermediate housing is needed for those who don’t qualify for social housing, won’t be able to afford a mortgages and yet cannot afford market rents. During this housing and homelessness crisis, it has become extremely difficult for an individual or family to rent an affordable, secure home. There are large numbers of people in Ireland who cannot afford the rents which are being charged in the locations where they work, attend college or near where their social networks are based. Cost Rental models are already the norm in other European countries. The Enniskerry Road Project is part of a process bringing Ireland more in line with European housing policy especially in relation to the Private Rental Sector. Across Europe neighbours from all walks of life live in housing association developments side by side.”
Daragh O’Sullivan, Vice Chairperson of Tuath Housing commented;
“Tuath are delighted to have started construction on Ireland’s first Cost Rental development in partnership with Respond, Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council, The Housing Agency, The Housing Finance Agency and the Department of Housing Planning and Local Government. The rent paid by tenants will cover the cost of providing the homes, not a cent more. We are thrilled to be involved in a project which offers moderate income households the choice of a more affordable, long-term and stable form of rental tenure than exists presently, with the added benefit that their rent will not be driven by price changes in the private rental market.”
The Enniskerry Road Project was designed by Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council for the construction of 155 social and affordable homes, a community facility along with green spaces at Enniskerry Road, Stepaside, Dublin 18. The site is located near to a wide range of amenities, public facilities, schools, health services, local community and sports groups. Enniskerry Road provides access to the LUAS Green Line, the 47 bus route, and the M50 motorway. The project is the result of a collaboration between Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council, the Housing Agency, Respond and Tuath Housing Associations, and the Housing Finance Agency. Financial support is also being provided through the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government.
The project includes 50 Cost Rental homes and 105 social homes to be apportioned between Respond (78 homes including 25 Cost Rental) and Tuath (77 homes including 25 Cost Rental). The homes will be a mix of 1, 2 and 3 bedroom properties. All of the 50 Cost Rental homes will be 2-bedroom apartments.
Posted: September 2019