Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees

Wednesday, 17 May 2023

Joint Oireachtas Committee on Agriculture, Food and the Marine

Revitalising Derelict and Vacant Homes on Farmland: Discussion

Mr. Patrick Davitt:

The organisations can help with advising farmers that if they are living in a new property, they can sell their old house or homestead. We have talked to the IFA about this. Many people do not want to sell those buildings because many of the ones we are speaking about are close to farm buildings and to the farmyard. A lot of the older houses from years ago were even built in the centre of the farmyard and there is a situation where it is difficult to get at due to rights of way and perhaps other things that go with it. We can help with the clientele who come to buy these properties, because they need to be of some of the same stock, of farming stock or something like that. The farming organisations could impress on owners of these properties that it is time to move on and sell them, maybe. It was said that many of these buildings were now being used to house cattle and the owners might have been a bit fast off the draw. I do not know which of the members said it, but somebody said it anyhow. That is correct and is a good point. However, there is a house there, even if it has been used for cattle. As Senator Daly says, the planning is the big problem here and if there is any part of a house there an applicant will get planning again. That is very good. The IFA and other farming organisations can encourage people to sell these properties. There are owners for them when they decide to do that.