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Repair and Leasing Scheme

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Repair and Leasing Scheme for Vacant Houses

 

The Department of Housing Planning and Local Government introduced the Repair and Leasing scheme in 2017 with a view to bringing vacant properties back into use for social housing. A number of improvements have been made to the original scheme. The key changes are that in addition to the traditional social leasing arrangement, property owners can opt for a Rental Availability Agreement (RAA) whereby the rental level is increased from 80% to 92% of market rent in return for the owner taking on the role of landlord including responsibility for maintenance of the property.  The minimum lease term has also been reduced to 5 years.

The basis of the scheme is that repair and improvement works to suitable vacant properties are funded to bring them up to the standard for rented accommodation and the cost of the works is then deducted from lease or rental availability payments over an agreed term.

There are a number of requirements in relation to the scheme:

  • The property has to be vacant at least 12 months, prior to submission 
  • There has to be a social housing demand for the property
  • The property has to be assessed as being viable to provide social housing
  • The minimum lease term is 5 years, and the maximum is 20 years depending on the cost of the upgrade works. The maximum term for a RAA is 10 years and a minimum term of 5 years also applies.
  • The lease payment is based on 80% (85% for apartments) of the current market rental rates in the property location.  This can be increased to 92% (95% for apartments where the property owner opts for a RAA.
  •  A further adjustment to the lease or RAA payment is made to off-set the cost of the upgrade work until the cost of the work has been repaid.
  • The scope and cost of the works, and the recoupment of the works cost through the lease or RAA payments, will be agreed between the owner and Meath County Council

Property inspections are carried out by Meath County Council staff who will identify the works required to bring the dwelling to the required standard. The maximum costs of repairs allowable under this initiative will be €40,000. However this can be increased to €50,000 with Dept. approval for former “bedsit” type dwellings.

For further details of this scheme please contact Meath County Council’s Housing Repair and Leasing team at 046-9097255 or email repairandleasing@meathcoco.ie or complete and return an enquiry form, available below:

Repair and Leasing Scheme Application Form pdf, 62kb

Repair and Leasing Scheme Frequently Asked Questions pdf, 123kb