Wednesday 17 October 2018

‘Nothing tangible for those who want a home – it’s all pie-in-the-sky stuff’

Case study: First-time buyer

No detail: Stephanie Elliot believes Government needs to rethink what is affordable. Photo: Gerry Mooney
No detail: Stephanie Elliot believes Government needs to rethink what is affordable. Photo: Gerry Mooney

Laura Lynott

First-time buyer and mum-of-two Stephanie Elliot labelled the Budget as "pie in the sky" and said she felt "nothing tangible" had been achieved for the majority looking to buy a home.

Stephanie (34) works full-time in the property sector and her husband, Fintan (30), cares for son Lucas (9), who has autism spectrum disorder. He also looks after daughter, Amiah (5).

The couple work hard daily and have, with the help of family, saved a lump sum and are waiting to hear if they've been successful in gaining assistance via the Rebuilding Ireland Loan Scheme to buy a home.

But the Budget was a "far cry" from the additional support Stephanie, from Bray, Co Wicklow, said they needed. "The Government has announced funding for 6,000 affordable homes for couples earning up to €75,000 but 6,000 affordable homes is a drop in the ocean," Stephanie said.

"When you consider how many families are, like us, just trying to get on the property ladder, how expensive homes are and how many homeless people we have, 6,000 is so small.

"Also I have to ask what does the Government think an affordable home is? Because I am guessing it won't be affordable to most people. Do they need to rethink their idea of affordable in line with people's salaries?

"And a maximum discount of €50,000, or 40pc below the market price, sounds great in theory but this is all theory. Where is the detail?

"This Budget sounds pie in the sky to me, without any meat on the bones. If I can apply for the affordable housing scheme along with the Rebuilding Ireland scheme, I'd say great - but we don't have that detail."

Irish Independent

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