€275m is to be allocated to 34 City and County Councils under the Social Housing Investment Programme for 2013. €69.3m will be allocated to housing supply including Traveller accommodation; €111.4m to regeneration, estate remediation and energy retrofitting; and €55m will be devoted to voluntary housing construction. Approximately €35m is also being provided to support the suite of grants for older people and people with a disability living in private housing. These grants, which are administered by the local authorities, provide 80 percent of the cost of adaption or other necessary works. Announcing the funding, Minister for Housing and Planning Jan O’Sullivan TD said she is developing other funding mechanisms that will provide additional sources of capital funding and will grow the supply of new social housing inlcuding the scope for the nonprofit Approved Housing Bodies to engage with the social housing finance models whereby the State might provide an up-front portion of overall cost and subsequently lease back the properties for longterm social renting and availing of funding from EU Structural Funds.
The Minister continued, “I am focusing investment in 2013 on improving the quality and standard of the 130,000 social houses with the objective of enhancing comfort levels and making dwellings more energy efficient and less costly to heat. This year I am bringing in a new measure which will specifically target older apartments and houses and involves the insulation of attics and walls, draught-proofing windows and doors and the fitting a lagging jackets and heating controls”.
The terms and conditions of the suite of private housing grants will be amended to better target those individuals and families in most in need.