Thursday, 9 March 2017
Department of Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government
Social and Affordable Housing Eligibility
146. To ask the Minister for Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government when a review of the income eligibility limits for social housing will commence; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [12673/17]
The Social Housing Assessment Regulations 2011 prescribe maximum net income limits for each housing authority, in different bands according to the area, with income being defined and assessed according to a standard Household Means Policy. The income bands and the authority area assigned to each band were based on an assessment of the income needed to provide for a household's basic needs plus a comparative analysis of the local rental cost of housing accommodation across the country. The limits also reflect a blanket increase of €5,000 introduced prior to the new system coming into operation, in order to broaden the base from which social housing tenants are drawn and thereby promote sustainable communities.
Given the cost to the State of providing social housing, it is considered prudent and fair to direct resources to those most in need of social housing support. I am satisfied that the current income eligibility requirements generally achieve this - they provide for a fair and equitable system of identifying those households unable to provide accommodation from their own resources. However, a review of the income eligibility limits for social housing supports as part of the broader social housing reform agenda set out in the Social Housing Strategy 2020 is scheduled to commence later this year.