29 Sept 2022

More than half of vacant council-owned homes in one area of Limerick require 'major work'

�426,708 has been allocated to refurbish boarded-up houses in Limerick

This property has been placed on the Derelict Sites Register by Limerick City and County Council

NINETEEN council-owned houses are currently vacant in the Adare/Rathkeale Municipal District, and ten of them require major refurbishment before they can be allocated to new tenants on the waiting list.

The remaining nine houses, local councillor Adam Teskey was told, only need minor repairs.

But, both he and Cllr Stephen Keary opposed the selling of a house in the Gortadroma area which was acquired by the council in 2006 but has been vacant since. 

“It is beyond the life of me that we would be disposing of any house at a time of a housing crisis,” Cllr Teskey said. There were, he added, thousands of people looking for houses. 

Cllr Keary said the house in question could easily have been refurbished by the council and he didn’t think it was appropriate to dispose of the house “at this time”. 

“I agree with the sentiments expressed but there might be a better way,” Cllr Kevin Sheahan said, suggesting that perhaps the house could be sold to someone in need of housing.

A new scheme was being developed where grants would be  available to people to buy and do up old properties, he continued. “That scheme would target people in need of housing,” he said. “The need for housing should be the first call.” 

The Housing Section don’t want the house “at this point in time” because of the cost involved in refurbishing it, councillors were told. The house had been vandalised and was suitable for cash buyers rather than first-time buyers  

The house is described as a derelict bungalow on a one-acre site and in need of extensive refurbishment. 

The property was put up for sale at the end of 2020 and there were 23 enquiries. A number of viewings were held in May last year and a number of parties entered a competitive bidding process. 

A decision on the disposal of the property was adjourned until the April meeting. 

No timescale was given as to when any of the other 19 houses owned by the council would be ready to be lived in.

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