I thought that it was worth posting this information on behalf of a group called CUBE (Campaign to Use Buildings that are Empty)
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Carbery Housing Association was set up ten years ago by local West Cork residents, who could see that local people and new arrivals were unable to find affordable housing to rent in West Cork. As a result they were obliged to emigrate, or to live in unacceptable conditions, dependent on state Rent Allowance. Because of this CHA has made several attempts to progress sustainable housing projects, notably in Bantry (Kinaith-Fineen and Slip) but on all occasions our proposals have been rejected by Cork County and Town Councils.
Today the housing situation nationally is in shambles. A recent University College of Dublin study has found that there are around 345,000 empty homes in Ireland that are standing empty and unused. Some are in need of repair, but the majority would be immediately habitable. At the same time Local Authority housing lists have grown to over 80,000 households.
In view of this, CHA has decided to concentrate on trying to bring empty properties into use. The Government has recently introduced a new scheme to lease private empty properties, where the DEHLG will pay up to 80% of the market rent to the property owner, on the basis of a 10 to2 0 year lease. The tenant pays the equivalent of a Council rent, to cover the management and maintenance of the property.
CHA is now actively looking for privately-owned properties that can be used under this Scheme. So far we are following up the use of 2 properties in West Cork, but we aim to secure many more properties for rent to persons on our housing list in the coming months.
We would like to invite you to join CHA. We need your help to keep looking for homes, and to help raise funds. We currently receive no grants of any kind. We need to carry out surveys of properties we are offered, we need to carry out essential repairs, we need to administer and publicise the Scheme. We want to get as many property owners as possible to understand that letting their houses to us for use by people who cannot afford to buy or rent is a win-win situation.
We are also currently looking for Volunteers, who can help out for one day in the forthcoming West Cork Music Festival, to be held in Skibbereen on July 31st. We need Volunteers to act as Stewards on the day, and for each Volunteer, the Festival organisers will contribute € 100 to CHA for every Steward found.
If you are willing to help out in this, or in helping to identify empty houses and their owners, then please contact me, on 028 21890 or 086 8224429, or by e-mail at [email protected]