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Census 2016 highlights extent of Ireland's housing shortage

21 April 2017, 01:52 | Winifred Adams

Census 2016 highlights extent of Ireland's housing shortage

Census 2016 highlights extent of Ireland's housing shortage

The CSO said its analysis found a 15% drop in the number of empty homes compared with 2011.

Just 8,800 properties overall have been added to Ireland's housing stock over the past five years, according to Census 2016 figures.

Deirdre Cullen, Senior Statistician, explained "In recognition of the demand from users, and society in general, for a better understanding of housing in Ireland, the Central Statistics Office has prioritised the housing release as its first thematic report from Census 2016".

However, three towns - Blacklion in Cavan, Keshcarrigan in Leitrim, and Kilgarvan in Kerry - all showed vacancy rates of at least 43%.

The CSO results show that a total of 2,003,645 houses and apartments in the State were enumerated in the 2016 Census.

The CSO figures also show a quarter of sales past year were to first time buyers.

Among the big towns, Letterkenny in Co Donegal fared worst where nearly 15% of homes had no-one living in them, closely followed by Longford with a 14.6% vacancy rate and Ballina at 14.3%.

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In regards to the 183,312 vacant dwellings, 79,966 were detached houses, 60,154 were semi-detached or terraced dwellings while the remaining 43,192 were apartments.

The rise in Dublin was lower than the national average at 8.3 per cent - but it remains the most expensive place to buy a home.

"If the resources are made available it can be delivered on a much larger scale".

The highest rent growth was in Dublin city, where it increase by 30%.

The number of home owners is in decline falling from 1,149,924 in 2011 to 1,147,552 in 2016.

"We need action to get the vacant homes that are suitable back into the active housing stock as urgently as possible".

Mr Davitt said the big impediments to house building included a lack of knowledge in government of the true cost of construction, the inability of smaller builders and developers to access finance and at reasonable interest rates, a lack of competition in the lending market, mortgage lending rules and a risk-averse attitude among lenders.



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