Wexford builder can deliver modular homes with 60-year lifespan in just two days

An example of an Offsite Manufactured Modular Home in Gorey.

Simon BourkeWexford People

The possibility of using modular housing to alleviate Wexford’s housing issues was mooted at the recent meeting of the Rosslare Municipal District (RMD). With a dearth of available properties and new housing developments moving at a glacial pace, Councillor Jim Codd asked why Wexford County Council (WCC) hasn’t brought some business to a local company specialising in modular homes.

“I spoke to a man the other day who said he can put up a modular house in two days at a cost of €80,000, a two-bed house,” said Cllr Codd. “They have a lifespan of 60 years, can somebody tell me if the council has looked into this?”

“I’ll talk to the architect about the possibility of modular housing,” replied housing officer Caroline Creane.

With regards to traditional bricks and mortar buildings the outlook remained unclear.

“We’re messing around in Tagoat for nearly four years,” said Cllr Ger Carthy referencing the long-running saga of the 18 new builds in Tagoat. “So will someone from the capital department come in next month and see if we can get a few houses, get people off the sofas, staying with their parents, living in caravans, can we prioritise this if possible?”

Sharing Cllr Carthy’s frustration, Cllr Codd noted how the haves and the have nots in the county were exposed during Micheál Martin’s recent visit to Taghmon. “The Tánaiste was present and there were great celebrations, yet from where I was standing I could have thrown a stone at a caravan where two people with special needs are living in the most difficult of circumstances. Let’s get real here, there are no houses being built.”

After the meeting a woman who has been living in a tiny bedsit with her four-year-old daughter outlined the difficulties she is currently experiencing.

“My daughter has to sleep in the bed with me, it’s disrupting her sleep, she has no room or space of her own, it’s small, it’s a tiny area. She’s starting school in September,” said the mother-of-one. “With HAP (housing assistance payment) you’re only allowed €530, there’s absolutely nowhere to rent for that kind of money.”

Living in the bedsit in rural Wexford for the past year the woman says she can’t understand WCC’s reluctance to build houses in the county’s hinterlands.

“I just want enough space for the two of us, a room for herself. Are the councils ever going to start building houses outside the towns?” she asked. “Not everyone wants to live in a town. I know beggars can’t be choosers but I’ve never lived in a town, I’m from the country, I’ve always lived in the country. And yet I’m lucky to have this place in some ways. It’s gone so bad, it’s ridiculous.”