“It’s bad enough that Fine Gael propose to effectively give away vast chunks of state land to private developers, but then asking people to pay €320,000 for a home and calling it affordable is a slap in the face.”

Social Democrats Political Director and Consumer Affairs spokesperson Anne-Marie McNally has asked what planet Minister Eoghan Murphy lives on if he believes that €320,000 constitutes an affordable home.

Ms McNally said that suggesting €320,000 as an affordable amount for most families is just insulting. She continued: “It’s bad enough that Fine Gael propose to effectively give away vast chunks of state land to private developers, but then asking people to pay €320,000 for a home and calling it affordable is a slap in the face.

“Under Central Bank rules, in order to afford a house of €320,000, a household would need to be earning at least €82k per year, and somehow have managed to save the 10% deposit of €32k. This is out of the reach of the vast majority of first-time buyers, and especially if those buyers are already paying our record-high rents. It is nonsense to suggest that €320,000 is affordable.

“Pitching affordable homes at this level would mean that the only people who could qualify are two-income households. Once again, single people need not apply. Parents who wish to take time out with their kids need not apply. Parents who are forced to stay home due to childcare costs need not apply. The list is endless. Basically, if you don’t have two full-time incomes, you don’t count. It constitutes dreadful social policy and Minister Murphy needs to go back to the drawing board, speak to real people and see what affordability actually means to people.”

ENDS

14th September 2018