Local representatives have raised concern over the practice of South Dublin County Council leasing homes from private companies for social housing. In the last number of weeks a lot of former council homes have been advertised for social housing through 25 year leases. Three of these properties are owned by the Davy Platform ICAV, part of the Davy Group. The homes would have been bought by tenants at discounted prices only to now be leased back to the council at market rent costs. There is currently no option for the council to buy these properties at the end of the 25 year lease. The families who will be housed in the properties will be guaranteed to be re-housed by the council if the lease is not extended after 25 years.
Gino Kenny, People Before Profit TD for Dublin Mid West, commented: “This is a completely absurd situation where the council is leasing back homes that it built decades ago at a ridiculous cost. This is yet another aspect of the housing crisis and caused by the failure of successive governments to build public housing.
“I know many families who are desperate for housing and will of course be happy to get a home. But in the long run this practice will be extremely costly to the taxpayer and when the 25 year lease is up the family might not be able to stay in their home.”
Cllr Madeleine Johansson added: “Most of these homes will be owned by major investment companies who will be making huge profits from these leases. This is yet another hand-out to private investment firms from the state. If this (and previous) government/s had built adequate numbers of council houses in the past we wouldn’t have found ourselves in this situation. It makes no sense that the government claims that we “can’t afford” to build council houses on a large scale when they are more than happy to pay extraordinary amounts to private investment firms and landlords.
We need people to join the protests for housing in September, the National Housing and Homeless Coalition will be protesting at the return of the Dail on the 15th September.”