Greens seek to deflate house price bubble


The Green Party today unveiled measures they claim will "deflate the house price bubble" before it bursts with drastic consequences for the economy.

Party spokesman on housing, Mr Ciaran Cuffe, Dublin City councillor and election candidate for Dún Laoghaire, said 50,000 homes needed to come on the market in the greater Dublin area each year to satisfy demand.

The main proposals include the extension of the first-times buyer grants to second-hand homes, the abolition of stamp duty for people wishing to trade down from large homes to smaller properties, a cap on rents of five per cent above inflation and increased security for tenants.

The second measure is specifically designed to encourage older people and couples living in large suburban family homes to move into smaller homes.

"This would get rid of a Catch-22 for older people who cannot afford to heat and maintain their homes but are frightened off selling by the prospect of paying huge stamp duty," Mr Cuffe said.

Third-level colleges such as TCD, UCD and DUI should be obliged to use "underused" land to house at least 20 per cent of their students, many of whom were opting not to attend further education because of the housing crisis.

Mr Cuffe said the measures were a "shopping list" they would be offering to prospective partners in any post-election coalition talks. He added that the party were confident of winning five or six seats in the next Dáil.