Coming to terms with the housing crisis
Sir, – In “The left always thinks it is right about housing crises” (Business Opinion, June 21st), Mark Paul suggests that labour costs as a particular area of concern and quotes figures from a Society of Chartered Surveyors in Ireland report The Real Cost of Housing Delivery from 2017.
However, the Society of Chartered Surveyors in Ireland identifies that almost a third of the sales price of a typical house is comprised of developers’ margin and site costs, some €95,000 out of a total price of €330,000.
Reductions in labour costs or building standards deliver marginal savings. The use of subvented State land put at the disposal of low-margin entities like co-ops can result in much larger discounts.
O’Cualann Housing Coop is currently selling three-bed homes for €219,00, all-in, on land provided at nominal cost by Dublin City Council, a third less than the 2017 typical sales price.
Given that the State controls vast land banks at present, this would seem a far more effective way to deliver affordable housing. – Yours, etc,