The housing waiting list where one in three refuse
Published 06/05/2015 | 02:30
One in three offers of social housing have been refused this year in a county council area where more than 2,500 people are on the official waiting list.
Among the "unreasonable refusals" in Donegal were people who felt the houses on offer were too far from the centre of their town.
Others demanded the homes on offer should be furnished.
Figures obtained by the Irish Independent show that the vast majority of re-housing refusals were deemed "unreasonable" when independently assessed by Donegal County Council.
The council's senior housing officer, Eunan Kelly, said the number of refusals was "stubbornly high".
While 95 new tenancies were established with the council since January, 39 offers of accommodation were refused, said a council spokeswoman.
"Eight of the reasons for refusals were considered reasonable with 31 unreasonable," she said.
The council said in a statement: "It should be noted that only one property was refused on the basis of the condition of the property and surrounding estate."
Like other councils, Donegal County Council rules that a person who refuses two reasonable offers of accommodation within a year "without valid and sufficient reason in the opinion of the housing authority" is suspended from the housing list for a year after the most recent refusal.
"There are currently 30 households suspended from the waiting list on the basis of having refused two or more reasonable offers of accommodation," said the spokeswoman.
But a total of 95 new tenancies have been created this year where people have accepted offers of accommodation.