Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Housing, Darragh O’Brien TD has said the Government need to come clean on the future of its troubled Affordable Home Loan Scheme in light of the ongoing failure to allocate the 2019 funding which was promised to Local Authorities nationwide.
The scheme is aimed at helping applicants who cannot get a mortgage through the banks to avail of a competitive loan from their local authority.
Speaking in Dáil Éireann this week, the Dublin Fingal TD said, “It’s been six weeks since I last quizzed the Minister regarding the status of the scheme and the funding allocated to it. This is in light of details I received through FOI that at least one Local Authority was not issuing loans to those approved due to delays in granting this year’s funding from Government. I was assured then that the matter was being discussed with the Department of Public Expenditure and would be revolved soon.
“This scheme was the Minister's sole measure to tackle the crisis in housing affordability. Prospective homeowners, desperate to get on the property ladder but unable to afford to buy given the current price of property were assured that this scheme would work. They were encouraged to apply via their Local Authority but thousands of people continue to be left in limbo completely unaware of what stage their application is at and when it might progress.
“Local authorities such as Kildare County Council are not in a position to agree to provide loans to those who have successfully met criteria because the Government has avoided allocating the necessary funding which had been promised for 2019.
“We’re now six months into the year and the Minister continues to refuse to provide a straight answer on what is going to happen next. It’s just not good enough. All of these people were made a promise of a loan and organised their lives on that basis. They are now being left high and dry by a party uninterested in supporting ordinary working people. Eoghan Murphy need to be clear on whether or not he is going to deliver on this promise and if he is, when?”