Laois County Council HQ
Public money is being spent in Laois to help private landlords to bring a targeted 13 vacant properties up to standard so they can be rented to people on the council's waiting list.
The Repair and Leasing Scheme (RLS) is targeted at owners of vacant properties who cannot afford or access the funding needed to bring their properties up to the required standard for rental property.
Subject to the suitability of the property for social housing, and the agreement of the property owner, the cost of the necessary repairs up to a maximum of €40,000 will be met upfront by the local authority or an approved housing body (AHB).
In recognition of both the critical demand for units and the potential the RLS has to offer, an additional €26m was assigned to fund the scheme in 2017, which brings the total amount available this year to €32m.
All local authorites in Ireland are getting money through the fund. The target for Laois is 13 properties. No details of how much money is earmarked for Laois properties.
The information was provided to the Dáil by the Minister for Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government Eoghan Murphy.
"This additional investment in 2017 means that delivery under the scheme can be accelerated and up to 800 vacant properties (nationally) can be brought back into use as new homes for families on local authority waiting lists this year," he told Eoin Ó Broin of Sinn Féin.
Some 1,300 people are on Laois County Council's housing waiting list.