Discounted apartments with prices starting at €116,000 will be available to low- and middle-income buyers who qualify for new affordable housing schemes planned for Dublin.
Dublin City Council has issued details of its proposed affordable home prices to developers vying to build on three council-owned sites, in what will be the council's first affordable housing scheme in more than a decade.
The sites, which are in Ballymun and Ballyfermot, have been designated for more than 370 homes to be offered at significant discounts on market values.
The cheapest homes will be on the two Ballymun sites, where the council proposes a one-bedroom apartment will cost €116,000; two-bedroom duplexes and houses will cost between €148,000 and €168,000; three-bedroom duplexes and houses between €176,000 and €200,000; and a four-bedroom house, €232,000.
One of the Ballymun sites sites, at Sillogue Road, close to the main street, is earmarked for 83 homes – 65 houses, nine apartments and nine duplexes.
Close by, a site on Balbutcher Lane would allow for 74 homes, again mostly houses, but including eight apartments and eight duplexes.
Prices have been set at a higher level for the 215 houses and apartments proposed for the Ballyfermot site, located immediately south of Cherry Orchard Hospital. Here one the 32 one-bedroom apartments has a proposed sale price of €136,000, one of the 32 two-bedroom apartment will cost €180,000, while the most expensive homes proposed – 151 three-bedroom houses – will cost €236,000 each.
Hugh Brennan, chief executive of housing co-operative Ó Cualann Co-housing Alliance, one of the groups interesting in building affordable housing on the council's land, said the low prices are achievable due to the State funding proposed.
Developers will not have to make a contribution to the cost of the site; no levies will be payable; and the State will fund the infrastructure necessary to service the site, about €4 million each for the Ballymun sites and €7.6 million for Cherry Orchard.
The prices also reflect a discount of 20 per cent which is paid by the council, but remains as an “equity stake” to be “fully repayable” by buyers according to the terms of the scheme.
Questions remain to be answered on how this stake will be repaid to the council, Mr Brennan said. “It is not 100 per cent clear how this is going to work. The legislation suggests the equity share will increase in line with inflation, and if repayment is left to the end of a 25-year mortgage term, this could leave buyers with a real millstone around their necks.”
Another option, of the stake being paid down gradually over the life of the mortgage, was something generally not favoured by mortgage lenders, he said.
“It could be the case that all the houses will be mortgaged under the Rebuilding Ireland loan scheme, but these are things that need to be ironed out quickly because they could cause real delays in the delivery of housing.”