Cian O'Callaghan TD

The Government has been strongly criticised for not supporting an amendment by Social Democrats TD Cian O’Callaghan to effectively ban the bulk purchase of homes by investment funds.

Deputy O’Callaghan, who is the party’s housing spokesperson, said:

“Last night, I submitted an amendment calling for a 100 per cent stamp duty rate on the bulk buying of homes by vulture funds. This would prevent speculators from snapping up multiple homes in housing developments at the expense of ordinary people. Unfortunately, the Government did not accept my amendment.

“There has been understandable public outrage since it was reported last week that an investment fund had purchased 46 out of 54 homes in Belcamp Manor in Dublin 17.

“The Government claim they have already taken action by introducing an increased stamp duty rate for bulk buying homes. I warned at the time that an increased rate of 10 per cent amounted to a tokenistic gesture that would be hopelessly ineffective.

“Figures released yesterday have confirmed that the number of homes being bought in bulk by investment funds has risen dramatically since the increased stamp duty was introduced in 2021.

“Last year, 623 houses and duplexes were bought in bulk by investment funds – that’s a 71 per cent increase on 2022.

“It proves that speculators are continuing to cash in on the highest rents this country has ever seen and making profits that can easily offset the derisory stamp duty liability in place.

“Nothing less than a 100 per cent stamp duty rate is needed to dissuade investment firms from bulk buying homes. By refusing to support my amendment, the Government has missed an opportunity to bring about an effective ban.”

January 18, 2024

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