New Online Platform, Vacant Homes Brings Hundreds of Houses Back into use - Construction Network Ireland - Construction Network Ireland

Back to News

Next Article

Published in Construction on 08/08/2019

New Online Platform, Vacant Homes Brings Hundreds of Houses Back into use

CNI Editor reports

VacantHomes.ie is an online platform initiated by Mayo County Council which allows the public to anonymously log empty homes in their areas. Between 250 to 300 vacant homes have already been brought back into use or are currently in the process of being renovated for immediate occupation.

Nearly 3,000 properties registered on the platform to date have been identified as being vacant; 48% of those are situated in the Leinster area and 36% are based in Munster. Vacant homes remain a very significant source of potential accommodation supply. In fact, Census 2016 data identified 183,312 vacant homes, not including 62,148 vacant holiday homes in Ireland and a more recent GeoDirectory reported an estimated vacant stock of 96,243.

Significantly, more than 90% of the properties registered on the VacantHomes.ie platform are houses.

VacantHomes.ie is a nationwide initiative and each of the 31 local authorities across Ireland has appointed a Vacant Home Officer to deal with vacant homes registered and/or identified in their local areas. The VacantHomes.ie team advises VHOs and members of the local community on the range of options to bring properties back to the market and provide much-needed housing. Schemes developed under Rebuilding Ireland such as the Repair and Leasing and Buy and Renew schemes are routes whereby owners can avail of upfront finance.

 VacantHomes.ie is continuously driving innovation across our housing sector and will further enhance its digital offering to reach more people and register more vacant homes over the coming year.  The team is also assisting local authorities around the country to embrace emerging tools and technologies to help tackle the current housing crisis.

Tom Gilligan, Director of Services with Mayo County Council, is thankful for the public efforts towards solving the housing crisis: “Bringing vacant homes back into use benefits the entire community. Not only does it provide much-needed housing, it also helps communities by breathing new life into areas that need rejuvenation. Given the chronic shortage of housing – both for the sales and rental market – bringing unused homes back into use is an efficient and cost-effective way to increase the supply of housing quickly. This also helps protect local services and stimulates the local economy. From an environmental and climate change perspective, using existing homes makes sense as much of the key infrastructure such as roads and utilities are already in place. It’s a win-win for everyone.”

VacantHomes.ie has a vision to help Ireland significantly reduce its quantity of empty homes. The information obtained from people using this site will allow for the creation of new homes from existing vacant and/or derelict houses and apartments. This will also help towards meeting Ireland’s housing needs in an environmentally sustainable manner. The VacantHomes.ie team is seeking the public’s help in identifying empty homes in their local areas by logging onto the platform.

Key figures:

  • Total number of Vacant Homes Officers: 31
  • Total number of registered properties on the platform: Nearly 3,000
  • Total number of properties being brought back into use: 250-300

Breakdown of Vacant Homes per Province:

Leinster

48%

Munster

36%

Ulster

3%

Connacht

13%

Breakdown of Vacant Homes per house type:

Detached

32%

Semi Detached

31%

Terraced

27%

Flat/Apt

6%

Other

4%

Find out more on www.vacanthomes.ie or email info@vacanthomes.ie.