Fingal County Council will exceed its annual housing delivery target for 2018, which was greater than the three previous years combined, with more than 1,600 housing solutions provided over the past 12 months.
After providing 1,376 units between 2015 and 2017, the local authority was tasked by the Department of Housing to deliver 1,637 homes under various different streams over the past 12 months.
Director of Housing Margaret Geraghty said: “We were in the happy position coming into 2018 that we had exceeded our target for the three previous years. The challenge though for 2018 was to deliver 1,637 housing solutions for people, which was greater than the total for the previous three years in total.
“It is really great that we did make that target and it is a really positive contribution in terms of social housing delivery overall. It is important to understand that the 1,637 housing solutions we provided means that many households did get an offer of social housing support, many for the first time from Fingal County Council, over the course of the year.”
“We could not have reached that target without the on-going commitment and support of the housing team, including our own in-house architects team and the continued support of our elected representatives.”
She said with just under 6,000 people on the housing waiting list waiting for an offer of support, and with the county continuing to grow, it is really important that Fingal County Council continues to provide housing across the county.
“At the end of the day, there are many households that have a new home at the end of 2018, and that is what drives our on-going commitment to work to achieve the ambition of the Rebuilding Ireland Programme.”
Ms Geraghty added that from a housing delivery perspective, development continues to scale up across the county in terms of both social and private delivery.
“From the private development side, we expect 2,000 homes to be built over the course of 2019, which is very close to 2008 levels. This is also a positive development as it translates into Part V properties coming on stream for the council to meet the housing support needs of households on Fingal’s social housing list.”
“So right across Fingal, either through private developments that are under construction and work that the Council’s Housing Department is doing in terms of housing construction, there has been a significant ramp-up in 2018.”
In terms of housing allocations, Ms Geraghty said that that from the 1,600 offers of social housing support, Fingal County Council only received 25 refusals. “This is a very low number and it is something we work very deliberately on.”
She added: “A lot of face-to-face work goes on with prospective tenants or people on our housing list to ensure that when an offer is made, tenants are in a position to accept it because it meets their needs.”
And looking forward to 2019, Ms Geraghty said she doesn’t expect the next 12 months to be any quieter, with a very strong pipeline of delivery coming on stream.
She said working closely with the Architects Department, plans and proposals for more housing would be brought forward to the Area Committee to seek support for solutions to be delivered.
“We will be continuing to build new housing over 2019, and we will begin to see senior citizens accommodation becoming part of what we normally in terms of housing delivery.”
Fingal County Council, she added, would also continue to work with the Department of Housing and the Minister, Voluntary Housing bodies, the Residential Tenancies Board and other stakeholders to ensure the delivery of housing across all the various streams.
“My ambition for 2019 is to keep it going and at the end of the year to say we have had another very successful year, while all the time knowing that the people on our housing list are the primary focus of the Housing Department to find a sustainable housing solution for them and their family.”