Tuesday, 4 December 2018
Department of Finance
Home Building Finance Ireland Establishment
140. To ask the Minister for Finance the status of the operation of the house building finance Ireland scheme; the way in which it is planned that apartment owners or management companies can apply for loans to enable them to undertake works to address latent defects in buildings; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [50195/18]
Home Building Finance Ireland (HBFI) is being established as one of a number of measures to address the housing crisis. It will provide a source of funding for small to medium sized residential developments on a commercial basis. The Home Building Finance Ireland Act passed remaining stages in the Oireachtas two weeks ago and was enacted in the past few days. Much progress has been made in preparing HBFI for launch and it is expected that HBFI will commence receiving funding applications towards the end of January 2019. HBFI will be in a position to consider applications from apartment owners and management companies for such funding at that time.
It is important to emphasise that in order for HBFI’s activities to comply with State aid rules it must operate on a commercial basis. This means, for example, that HBFI will not be in a position to offer cheap or subsidised credit. Any funding provided by HBFI will be backed by appropriate security and normal banking terms and conditions will apply.
It is important to recognise that the funding of remediation works are complex and high risk projects and pose significant issues for lenders in relation to access to appropriate security etc. While HBFI will be open to considering all residential development construction related activity, it is the responsibility of all applicants to ensure that their applications for funding are commercially viable and allow HBFI to remain compliant with State aid rules.