Article Category: Housing Policy


The Private Rented Sector: the Case for Regulation

In the past, those with good jobs and reasonable incomes in Ireland might have aspired to purchase a home. However, after a short few years of house price falls subsequent to the economic crash in 2008, the purchase price of houses has been escalating again, meaning that owning a home may now be impossible even for households that are relatively well-off. Therefore, they have no option but to rely on accommodation provided by private landlords.

House Keys on Stack of Money isolated on a white background

Recent Trends and Developments in the Owner-Occupier Sector in Ireland

Cathal O’Connell and Joe Finnerty Introduction This article examines the recent experiences of the owner-occupier sector in Ireland, with reference to historic trends in home-ownership, the impact of the economic crash on the housing system and the consequences that followed, and the current and pending challenges faced by the sector. Given the links between the… Read more »

eviction notice

The Private Rented Sector in Ireland: Time for a National Strategy

Bob Jordan Introduction  In December 2014, in a ‘Chairperson’s Statement’ introducing the 2013 Annual Report of Threshold,1 Senator Aideen Hayden, stated: ‘Threshold is calling on the Government to introduce a national strategy on private rented housing as a matter of urgency. This strategy must provide real security for individuals and families who are making their… Read more »

homeless man asleep on cardboard.


Peter McVerry SJ The Housing Crisis Homelessness is the most visible, and extreme, consequence of a dysfunctional housing system. And the housing system in Ireland today is certainly dysfunctional; indeed, it could be said to be an example of the perfect storm, with all three of the main housing sectors in crisis at the same… Read more »

Priory Hall Resident

Buying a House – Is the Buyer Protected? Some Reflections from a Legal Perspective

Consumer law covers most of the products we buy today. We presume that what we buy is regulated by certain minimum standards. Furniture must meet some minimum health and safety requirements. Electrical goods must work, must not be a danger to the consumer, and must last a minimum period. Cars must meet mechanical, electrical, design and other minimum standards. Several laws and regulations govern the manufacture, transport and sale of goods. Most of the time, the goods we purchase ‘work’: the chair does not collapse, the kettle boils, and the car stays on the road. However, if faults are discovered, purchasers can, and do, return to the shop with the defective goods and so it is not unusual for kettles, shoes, and even cars to be exchanged.

a refugee camp scene

The Refugee Convention Sixty Years On: Relevant or Redundant?

Sixty years ago the international community agreed a framework for the protection of refugees, when a diplomatic conference in Geneva adopted the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees. Today, the protection of those compelled to leave their own state, and seek asylum in another, continues to present formidable challenges. The scale of those challenges, and the perceived inadequacies of the Refugee Convention’s response to them, have led some critics to argue that the Convention is now outdated, unworkable and irrelevant.


Building Sustainable Communities – The Role of Housing Policy

The Barriers to Community Building sustainable communities is extremely difficult in Ireland today. In many urban areas, at least, the sense of community has almost disappeared. There are several reasons why this is so: First, increased mobility means that many people expect to move from one community to another and so may have fewer bonds… Read more »

28.8.07. Leitrim. ©Photo by Derek Speirs

Homes not Hostels: Rethinking Homeless Policy

Most homeless people simply want a place they can call home. Some need varying levels of support to enable them to keep a home. But a key to their own front door is the symbol of the desires of homeless people.

Housing and Homelessness

If, as predicted, the number of new houses built during 2007 shows a decline on the 2006 figure, this will represent a notable break with the significant upward trend in housing construction that has been such a feature of the past decade. Whereas 26,500 houses and apartments were built in 1995, the number rose to 49,812 in 2000 and to 93,419 in 2006. In other words, housing output in 2006 was more than 250 per cent higher than in 1995.

Still Waiting for Housing

The findings of the Local Authority Assessments of Social Housing Needs, carried out in March 2005, were released by the Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government in December 2005.