Wednesday 26 October 2016

'Empty nester' sweeteners won't solve housing crisis

Published 23/01/2016 | 02:30

Some 746 properties advertised online were surveyed as part of the study
Some 746 properties advertised online were surveyed as part of the study

So, the latest cunning plan to solve the housing crisis is to get so-called 'empty nesters' to downsize and free up their large family houses for a younger generation. Nama has advised the Government to encourage older parents to sell up and move to smaller homes.

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However, the lack of supply means that such a scenario wouldn't suit the seller, as Central Bank mortgage deposit rules have pushed up demand for smaller, more affordable homes, while at the same time demand for pricier, larger homes has actually fallen.

In some circumstances, the offer of a sweetener may well prove attractive for some elderly homeowners to move on.

But the plan is hardly going to free up large tracts of houses or solve the problem of the lack of supply in the market.

Notably, Nama also criticised the Government's lack of urgency in addressing infrastructural shortcomings, saying this is stalling development in Dublin.

The Coalition's record on housing is a black mark on its five years in office, and efforts to boost supply have been lacklustre.

It leaves the next government with a substantial body of work to match the growing demand with affordable supply.

Irish Independent

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