Over 5,000 vacant social homes returned to active use

€86.7m spent on restoration and refurbishment over nine years

by Rose Barrett
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A total of 5,282 vacant social homes were brought back into active use in Dublin City County Council between 2014 and 2023.

This was under the Voids Programme figures released by the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage  with a cumulative €86.7m spent over the nine year period to renovate and refurbish the homes.

Making more efficient use of existing housing stock is a key action of the Government’s Housing for All plan. The Voids Programme supports local authorities in preparing vacant homes for re-letting and builds on the ongoing work to tackle vacancy and dereliction to bring vacant properties into re-use for housing.

Minister for Housing, Heritage & Local Government, Darragh O’Brien said “Refurbishment and the return to use of vacant properties helps to reduce pressure on existing housing stock, increase supply, and ultimately, provide much needed homes for people.”

“Apart from addressing the need for social housing, the refurbishment of these unoccupied social homes also has a positive impact on communities. It prevents the decline and abandonment of vacant properties, which, in some instances, can lead to antisocial behaviour.”

He commended Dublin City Council for working with the Department of Housing  to bring these homes back into active use. 

“Their efforts will make a real difference in people’s lives. All local authorities are encouraged to continue to be as proactive as possible in the return of all vacant properties to use through the use of the Voids Funding Programme as well as other programmes such as the Buy & Renew and Repair & Lease Schemes,” he noted.

“Speed in tackling vacant social housing is also critical to regeneration and improving the vitality and vibrancy of communities in towns and cities across the country. Through this Housing for All action we have now have shifted to a position of planned maintenance of social housing stock to ensure the fastest possible turnaround and re-let times for social housing stock.’’

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