Barry O’Halloran and Fiona Reddan
Cairn Homes will be building on up to eight sites by early next year, according to its chief executive, Michael Stanley.
The house builder floated last year but a number of commentators have questioned the fact that it has yet to move significantly towards meeting its target of building 1,000 to 1,200 homes a-year by 2019.
Speaking after its annual general meeting (agm) in Dublin on Tuesday Mr Stanley said it that it would be “building on eight sites most likely by early next year”.
Mr Stanley said that Carirn continues to gear its housebuilding operations towards its objective of delivering 1,000 to 1,200 homes a- year.
Cairn recently paid €378 million to buy €1.75 billion in property loans from Ulster Bank, known collectively as Project Clear, with the aim of taking ownership of the development sites against which the debts were secured.
Ahead of its agm the company confirmed that it has taken control of a further four of the portfolio’s sites, with the potential for 1,150 homes. It hopes to own 90 per cent of them by the end of 2016.
This brings to seven the total number of sites of which it has taken ownership. On March 14th it said that it had taken over three, two in Dublin and one in Maynooth, Co Kildare.
The four latest sites include 71 acres on the South Ring Road in Naas, Co Kildare, 7.6 acres at Athgarvan Road, Newbridge, Co Kildare, 145 acres in Blessington, Co Wicklow, and 6.6 acres in Donabate, Co. Dublin. It hopes to own 90 per cent of the Project Clear sites by the end of the year.
Mr Stanley said it has been a “transformative year” since the company’s stock exchange launch last June.
“In the past 12 months we have acquired a core land bank of 25 development sites with the combined capacity to deliver in excess of 11,000 homes,” he said.
“Our industry is regaining its feet and faces challenges, however I believe that Cairn’s more sustainable approach to home building puts us and all of the companies we partner with, in an advantageous position, and will allow Cairn Homes to make a meaningful contribution to the very significant shortage of high quality and affordable new homes in Ireland”.
Mr Stanley added that sales at the group's Parkside site on the Malahide Road, Balgriffin, Dublin 13, continue to progress well, with 70 houses sale agreed to date and 35 customers moved into their new homes.
Davy Stockbrokers estimates that on these figures, the developer is selling close to two homes a week. In addition, Mr Stanley said that the launch of 15 homes in Albany, Kiliney, south Dublin last weekend was “very well received by both customers and commentators.”