Analysis by the Construction Industry Federation (CIF ) shows that 14,917 new houses were started between January and October this year.
This represents an increase of 35.6 per cent since the previous year. If this trend continues, the CIF estimates that total commencements will approach 18,000 by the end of 2017.
CIF director general, Tom Parlon said: “The CIF welcomes Housing Minister Eoghan Murphy’s announcement that will see changes to requirements for building apartments in Ireland. We are engaging with the government on this and believe that such guidelines can make the building of affordable apartments in urban centres such as Dublin, economically viable once again.
“The Government’s changes here are a vindication of our consistent position that apartment building is not viable currently due to overly restrictive building requirements. Traditional developers, banking institutions and international institutional investors cannot deliver apartments under the current system.”
The ESRI recently upgraded the required housing output target for Ireland from 25,000 per year to 35,000 per year. Progress has been made, but CIF members are still reporting difficulties in four key areas that will prevent the achievement of a sustainable level of housing output.
These areas are: A lack of available finance outside the greater Dublin area for housebuilders; delays in the planning system; requirements in apartment building, making it financially unviable; lack of available serviced land (land lacking infrastructure such as roads and water connections ).