Surveyors demand building of more homes
The Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland (SCSI) has called on the Government to support the delivery of more housing units, more commercial office space and to introduce an apprenticeship scheme to address the skills shortage and create more jobs.
The SCSI - the professional representative body for the property, land and construction sectors - said Budget 2016 was an opportune time to put in place key measures to create a more sustainable sector.
SCSI president Andrew Nugent said maintaining competitiveness by dealing with the lack of supply was paramount.
"We are calling for the introduction of a suite of measures that would kick-start building and increase supply," he said.
"The Housing Agency has projected a need for 21,000 units annually and we are currently building less than half of that figure. We now need some short-term measures to stimulate activity."
He described proposals to introduce rent controls as a retrograde step.
"International evidence has shown that rent controls do not work in markets where there is an acute supply shortage.
"Building more units and supporting the financing of rental schemes, such as the Build to Rent scheme the SCSI is advocating, will make rents more affordable."
In the commercial property market, the SCSI called on the Government to increase the provision of development finance. "One of the main sources of delay on commercial projects coming to the market is difficulties accessing finance," Mr Nugent said.