Thomas Pringle TD
Independent TD for Donegal, Thomas Pringle, has called on Government to put extensions in place with county council incremental purchase offers, saying the impact of Covid on employment may cause house sales to fall through.
“There is a serious issue in Donegal now, where people who were in the process of purchasing a home and may have received a loan offer, are now off work and in receipt of a Covid payment.
"Their original loan offers will expire within three or six months and will require updated income details. This will cause a lot of house sales to fall through.
“People who are purchasing their homes through the council incremental purchase scheme have offers valid for 12 months.
"Credit unions, banks, etc will not even look at their applications for a loan without current payslips and will not take into account details of income prior to lockdowns.
“I know it’s all about the ability to pay, but there needs to be extensions put in place with council incremental purchase offers,” he said.
Deputy Pringle was addressing the Dáil yesterday on the Land Development Agency Bill 2021.
The deputy said the Land Development Agency (LDA) is being asked to fill two competing roles: becoming a developer of public land while purporting to be increasing the availability of affordable homes.
“It is clear that the bill will make the Land Development Agency (LDA) the Trojan horse that the Government wants to siphon off any remaining public land.”
The deputy said this is a class issue.
“The housing and homeless crisis is a direct result of Fianna Fáil/Fine Gael and Green policies over decades. Profits for the few rather than homes for the many.”
He noted that Part 8 of the bill will provide for compulsory purchase orders, something that has been requested for years.
“If my tone in this speech sounds fed-up, it is because I am Minister. I am truly fed-up with the inaction of this and previous Governments with your neoliberal policies, commodification of housing and financialisation of this human right.
“While Donegal may not be experiencing the worst of the housing crisis, it is still an issue there. People are living in overcrowded accommodation and waiting years for homes.
"We know that people in domestic violence refuges and in direct provision centres are not included in official homeless figures but these would add to Donegal’s overall need for public and affordable housing.
“Our rents may be among the lowest in the country but so is our income. Disposable income is lowest in Donegal and highest in Dublin so comparatively rent can still be unaffordable for many.”
He added: “Empower our local authorities, empower our communities.”
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