19 September 2020
By Tom Collins
Voids Stimulus Programme to bring 331 units back into social housing stock in Cork
The Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage, Darragh O’Brien TD, has welcomed the response to the 2020 Voids Stimulus Programme which will see up to 2,500 social housing units across the country refurbished and re-let to individuals and families, struggling with homelessness or on the social housing list.
An empty Council/Social house is known as a ‘void’. ‘Voids’ usually exist when a tenant moves out and funds are not available to bring the house back up to standard for re-letting.
A total of €7,297,182 has been allocated by the Department to Cork City Council and Cork County Council for the refurbishment of 331 units. Applications are categorised into three funding streams; standard voids at an average cost of approximately €11,500, homeless voids at an average cost of €17,300 and long-term voids at an average cost of €47,000.
Commenting Minister O’Brien said, “I am very glad to see such an uptake in the scheme and at such a swift pace. The Department is now in a position to approve applications and Local Authorities such as Cork City and Cork County Council can get to work in bringing vacant social housing units back into use.
“I have made it very clear that I want to see works carried out and all units allocated by the end of this year and local authorities will be providing status updates to the Department.
“We know that COVID-19 has had an impact on housing delivery targets this year so the refurbishment and re-letting of voids is vitally important. I would like to thank both Cork City and Cork County Council for their engagement with this programme and urge them to refurbish and re-let their units as soon as possible,” he concluded.