A priority of the Government's Housing for All plan is to encourage the refurbishment of vacant and derelict properties to boost housing supply. A Vacant Refurbishment Grant is now available to incentivise first-time buyers and homeowners to bring vacant and derelict buildings back into residential use across our cities, towns, villages and rural Ireland.
Fianna Fáil recognises that community is an integral part of Irish society and we want to see our rural communities thrive. The Croí Conaithe Towns Scheme was launched in July 2022. It is a new scheme which aims to tackle vacancy and dereliction in our towns and villages by giving prospective homeowners a grant of up to €30,000 (€50,000 if they prove dereliction) for the refurbishment of a vacant property for occupation as a principal private residence. This scheme will bring families back into the main streets of our towns and villages. Rejuvenating, regenerating and breathing new life back into them.
The new expansion to the Croi Conaithe Vacant Property Refurbishment Grant, as part of Housing for All, now includes eligible vacant properties in both cities and more remote rural areas right across Ireland. So whether you’re in the centre of Cork City, Macroom or Blarney you can now apply for the Croi Conaithe grant.
The scheme’s expansion will help bring vacant and derelict properties back into residential use and ensure the existing housing stock is used to the fullest extent possible. It will also help limit emissions from residential construction and add vibrancy to Ireland’s cities and rural areas, ticking both the environmental and economic boxes.
Under the Croí Conaithe Vacant Property Refurbishment Grant €30,000 is available to homebuyers to refurbish a home which they will live in. Where a property is derelict, a maximum top-up grant amount of up to €20,000 will be available, bringing the total grant available for a derelict property up to a maximum of €50,000. The grants can also be combined with the SEAI Better Energy Home Scheme that covers works of up to €26,750.
The grant, provided through the Croí Cónaithe Fund, is a key action under Housing for All, the Government’s housing plan, and supports the aims of the Our Rural Future policy. Over 420 applications have been made since the grant was initially launched on 14 July 2022 with Cork County amongst the top Local Authorities for applications so far.
The expanded Vacant Property Refurbishment Grant provides a fantastic opportunity for even more people - from every part of our county - to refurbish vacant properties with the aim of converting them into their homes, enabling them to live in cities, towns, villages and rural areas.
I'm very aware of the issues regarding vacancy and dereliction in Cork and have been raising this with the Minister. The Derelict Sites Levy has not been effective enough in this regard. Minister O'Brien is aware of this and has recently set up a working group to push on with the legislative changes to make the levy more effective for local authorities. A dedicated vacancy unit has now been established within the Department of Housing. This is the first time such a unit has been established and credit is due to Minister O'Brien for this.
The expanded Vacant Property Refurbishment Grant provides real practical help. It helps address vacancy through sustainable reuse of buildings, it helps revitalise our communities and, most importantly, it helps more people to own their own home.
Fianna Fáil were the first political party to recognise the unique importance of home ownership in Ireland. From Eamon De Valera to Taoiseach Micheál Martin, Fianna Fáil have made housing for all a priority. Minister for Housing, Darragh O’Brien is proud to build on Fianna Fail’s progressive housing policies and last year launched ‘Housing for All’, the most ambitious, fully costed plan which sets us on a pathway of delivering 300,000 new homes between now and 2030, an average of 33,000 per year.
Housing for All is working. Supply, which is key to improving our housing market, is increasing and this fundwill play a big part in that.
An Application form for the Croí Cónaithe Fund is available from your local authority.
Aindrias Moynihan TD
Spokesperson on Well Being, Public Health and National Drugs Strategy and TD for Cork North West