Strict Tenant Purchase Scheme criteria penalising social welfare recipients – Scanlon

Published on: 10 October 2017


Fianna Fáil TD for Sligo-Leitrim Eamon Scanlon has called on the Housing Minister to publish the review of the Tenant Purchase Scheme without delay.  Deputy Scanlon has been raising concerns about the eligibility criteria for the scheme since it was introduced, particularly for people receiving social welfare payments.

“The Tenant Purchase Scheme was established in January 2016 to help local authority tenants to buy their homes, however the eligibility criteria is extremely strict and as a result many people are finding that they cannot avail of the scheme”, explained Deputy Scanlon.

“The situation is particularly stark for people receiving a social welfare payment. In fact, it excludes tenants who are dependent on social welfare payments as their primary source of income and it deliberately makes it very difficult for anybody in receipt of social welfare payments to purchase a house, which is regrettable.

“The Tenant Purchase Scheme was first established under Fianna Fáil, and was responsible for the greatest transfer of wealth in the history of the State.  Opening up a pathway to home ownership is at the very heart of Fianna Fáil policy.  Ireland cannot afford to have a divided society where home ownership is confined to a few, while the rest struggle with unstable tenure and rent levels.

“The right to buy under the tenant purchase scheme has been an important tool in extending home ownership opportunities to low income households.  The option to own a valuable long-term asset has empowered thousands of families across the country and should not be denied to any family or individual.

“A review of the scheme was undertaken earlier this year and it’s now sitting on Minister Murphy’s desk.  He needs to publish this report without delay and he needs to ensure that measures are introduced to ensure that tenants who can demonstrate the ability to buy their home are allowed to do so”.

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