Timeframe of 23 weeks to re-let vacant council dwelling

By Hayden Moore

The amount of time that it is expected to take for a vacant dwelling to be re-let has increased to 23 weeks on average while 620 homeless applicants sit on the Council’s housing list.

It was also revealed by the Council at the recent monthly meeting of South Dublin County Council that the average time on the housing list for homeless applicants is three-and-a-quarter years.

Lucan Tidy Towns aerial view of village

From October of last year to February this year, the number of homeless applications from single persons across South Dublin grew from 310 to 327 – with 293 couples/families applying.

Although the family applications have gradually depleted since October, when there were 310, the Council have said that the number of “homeless applications have remained constant with new presentations continuing to arise replacing those applicants that have exited homelessness through HAP placement or social home allocations.

“Continued emphasis on additional housing supply of all tenures in the County is essential to effect a decrease in both homeless and housing applicant numbers,” they insisted.

In January 2018, the amount of time that the Council quoted for a timeframe on re-letting dwellings was just over eight weeks, compared to 23 weeks in the same month of this year.

However, they did state that the way they calculate the amount of time taken to re-assign a property to new tenants has changed since the figure given last year and it sat somewhere nearer to a 17-week turnaround.

In reply to a question posed by Councillor Emma Hendrick, they said that the figures for “early 2019 are higher than desirable” and that it has been due to “allocation challenges with the numbers of new homes being delivered under the social housing construction programme as well as consequential transfers increasing the demand on direct labour and contractor resources to turnaround vacant properties.”

The Housing Department’s plan to address the current timeframes by improving allocation, offering and pre-tenancy procedures, finalising the appointment of new tenderers to re-let repairs to complement labour staff works, and through the “tightening” of how they manage transfers.

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