Sunday 22 April 2018

'I'm stuck' - Homeowner unable to sell apartment in boom-time estate due to outstanding fire safety notice

Acha Bhile apartments Picture: MyHome.ie
Acha Bhile apartments Picture: MyHome.ie
Amy Molloy

Amy Molloy

A homeowner is currently unable to sell her apartment in a boom-time Co Clare estate as there is an outstanding fire safety notice.

The woman, who owns an apartment in Acha Bhile on the Lahinch Road in Ennis, said fire safety issues were raised about certain properties in the development in 2013.

She bought the property before the recession hit and the fire issues were not discovered until eight years later.

A spokesperson for Clare County Council said the Fire Service inspected eight apartments and subsequently wrote to the owners/occupiers advising that remedial actions, such as the completion of separating walls, were necessary.

However, one of the homeowners, who wishes to remain anonymous, said she cannot afford to foot the bill.

"I'm stuck currently, unable to sell my apartment as it has an outstanding fire safety notice and the units around me are all empty so I have nobody to work with to get the remedial work done even if I could afford it. It's very frustrating," she told Independent.ie.

The development was built by Cronan Nagle Construction which went into liquidation in 2009.

A spokesperson for the management company said: "The provision of certification in relation to compliance of the estate with Planning Permission, building regulations including fire regulations and the rectification of defects, if any, to the common areas are a matter for the present developer or developers of the estate."

It was revealed last week how up to 240 homeowners in the Bru Na Sionna estate in Shannon were told the week before Christmas that they need to pay €2.25m to amend the defects in their homes or face evacuation.

The estate was built by Paddy Burke Builders which went into receivership in 2010.

Independent councillor Gerry Flynn has said homeowners should not be forced to pay for defects when they bought the property in good faith, assuming it was fit for purpose.

"The general view here is that you would have expected when people buy a property and it goes through a planning process, you would expect that it is fit for purpose. But years after buying them, now they're being told there are defects."

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