It was reported by The Irish Times in recent days that property developers are “surging to offload sites” to the Land Development Agency. This news comes as more than 100 submissions were made to sell large scale housing sites to the State agency under Project Tosaigh, which is a €1.25 billion scheme to buy land with planning permission or homes where development has stalled for any reason. Project Tosaigh launched last November with the aim of unlocking housing developments that have the potential to deliver more than 150 homes. Effectively, the LDA can buy sites and housing or, preferably, enter into a forward purchase agreement to acquire the homes. For landowners and developers considering such forward purchase arrangements, reach out to the Castlehaven Finance team to discuss access to the necessary development finance required to complete the proposed project: https://www.castlehavenfinance.com/contact
The State’s reliance upon the private development sector to deliver social and/or affordable housing is not a revelation. Despite contrary market and media commentary, the latest figures from the Department of Housing show that private sector developers delivered almost 80 percent of all social housing units last year, with just 20 percent delivered by local authorities and/or approved housing bodies.
Total social housing delivery for 2021 was 5,142, which falls significantly short of the Government’s target of 9,500. This under-delivery has been attributed to the pandemic restrictions and associated delays. Of the 5,142 new social homes delivered, only 1,046 were delivered by the public sector. The vast majority of all social homes (3,481) were acquired by way of turnkey purchases i.e. Part V or through the forward-purchasing arrangement mentioned above. While this method of delivery continues to face political criticism, in real terms, it appears to be the most likely way that 2022 housing targets – including a significant ramping up of cost rental housing nationwide – can be met.
Across all sectors of housing delivery, a record high number of commencement notices were lodged in the first three months of this year, according to the most recent Department of Housing data. The majority of these notices were in respect of homes in Dublin (city and county), with KIldare, Cork County and Meath subject to strong activity. In March alone, notices for 2,809 new homes were lodged with the Building Control Authorities, which is a month-on-month increase of 21 percent, and a year-on year increase of 190 percent.
With offices in Dublin and Cork, Castlehaven Finance has provided development finance for both private and social housing to developers, builders and project owners across Ireland in excess of €1.7 billion (200+ loans) since 2014. Speak to the Castlehaven Finance team about your next commercial or residential development project https://www.castlehavenfinance.com/contact