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Almost 45,000 individuals and families now in their own home thanks to Fine Gael backed housing schemes – Cummins

Fine Gael is delivering more homes for people and progress will continue in 2024

1st February 2024 - Senator John Cummins

Almost 45,000 individuals and families now own their own home thanks to Government backed housing schemes and we are determined to build on that momentum again this year, a Fine Gael Senator has said.

Senator John Cummins said vital home ownership measures introduced by Fine Gael which Opposition parties decry and want to abolish are making a real difference for prospective purchasers.

Senator Cummins, Fine Gael’s Housing spokesperson, said: “The Help to Buy Scheme was introduced by Fine Gael in 2017 to provide first-time-buyers with up to €30,000 in the form of an income tax rebate towards the cost of a deposit.

“To date it has helped 43,622 individuals and families buy or build their first home right across the country and this support will continue until the end of 2025 at least which is a hugely positive move that gives certainty to prospective purchasers or those wishing to build their first home.

“The First Home scheme, which launched in July 2022, aims to bridge the gap for eligible purchasers between the maximum mortgage they can attain though a participating lender and the price of new home, with maximum ceiling prices applying in different parts of the country.

“So far, over 3,196 people have been approved for the scheme and 1,255 individuals and families have concluded the purchase of their new home [2]. These are just two of several schemes introduced by government to boost home ownership, and alone they have helped 44,877 individuals and families get on the property ladder.

“Thankfully we are now seeing 500 first time buyers every week in this country buying their first home. Fine Gael is committed to maintaining and devising new ways to enable people to own their own home, with Budget 2024 allocating record capital funding of €5bn. This will help us continue to rapidly deliver new affordable homes in the market for purchase and rent.

“There was more positive news last month with data showing 32,801 Commencement Notices for new homes were received by authorities in 2023.  This was up 21% on the previous year and is the highest number since records began in 2014.

“We also have the final completion figures for 2023 which show that just shy of 32,700 were completed and occupied last year.

“On the other hand, we have the Opposition offering no plans to increase the housing stock we so badly need in this country. Incredibly, Sinn Féin and all opposition parties want to abolish the Help to Buy and First Home Schemes, taking away critical and essential supports that are working so well.

“We have Sinn Féin representatives criticise the Government daily on housing, yet they never offer a credible and comprehensive policy of their own on how they would boost supply. The fact is Sinn Fèin operate in a credibility vacuum and their populist agenda would set the progress this country has made back years if they came into power,” Senator Cummins concluded.


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