Housing policy should ensure the provision of an affordable home for all while protecting our natural environment and ensuring best land use

The Green Party believes that adequate housing is a human and social right, interdependent with good planning, transport, infrastructural development, and land management. We believe housing policy should promote good outcomes for children, young people, and those most vulnerable in society such as the elderly and persons with disabilities.

We believe also that Green Housing policy should reverse the car dependent, suburbanised, out of town housing developments that is a feature of present national housing policy, in favour of a Green Party policy that renews city and town living, making it attractive again and encouraging the 15-minute city model, where all amenities are within walking distance.

Key policy points

A constitutional amendment enshrining the right to a home in the constitution.

A national housing and land use plan to be overseen and regulated by a renamed and refocussed Land Development Agency (to be called the Land Use Authority) and serviced by fully funded and legislatively supported local authorities and approved housing bodies (AHBs) including community-led housing and community land trusts with the support of the Land Registry Office, the Valuation Office and the Revenue Commissioners.

A site value tax system to discourage hoarding of land, improve the efficiency of its use, including by bringing unused properties into use , and halt the increasing unaffordability of property due to high land costs encouraging densification of low-density housing.

To provide the option of homeownership or secure long-term affordable rental for all solving the affordability crisis by creating 200,000 additional public and privately provided not for profit homes over the next 5 to 10 years through acquisition and direct and subcontracted builds by local authorities and approved housing bodies and the repurposing of existing vacant or underutilised buildings. Intervention at this scale will also reduce pressures and improve affordability in the private market.

To finance this by shifting government expenditures away from private landlords (HAP/RS etc, eliminating in the process the HAP and RS systems) and developers and into not-for-profit housing built on State land acquired at existing use value through a system of active land management.

In addition, to include synergistic retrofit of vacant stock (in particular commercial which could be retrofitted to residential), with many collateral benefits of reduced travel distances with favourable modal split; diversity of use; revitalising towns and villages; while for both retrofit and new build encouraging architects to take account of the benefits of embodied carbon in the context of climate emergency.

Create security of tenure in the private rental market by ending sale, as a reason to end a tenancy if it is likely to lead to homelessness, for the duration of the housing emergency , legislating for tenancies of indefinite duration and introducing a form or rent review popular in Germany.

An improved regulation system to support those in mortgage arrears or whose mortgage is not affordable so that they can re-agree a mortgage which is then affordable with their current financial institution.

To introduce a system of impartial local authority building control inspectors, as well improving the current system of remedying defects when they occur.

To eliminate segregated social housing and replace it with publicly and privately provided affordable housing available to all with priority for those in most need under cost rental or cost purchase restricted resale owner occupier models.

Policy revised: December 2022

UN Sustainable Development Goals: 1, 3, 9, 10, 11, 16

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