‘Hitting 10,000 Doesn’t Tell Us Anything That Hitting 9,000 Didn’t Tell Us’

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Housing Minister Eoghan Murphy

This morning.

Housing Minister Eoghan Murphy spoke to Miriam O’Callaghan on RTÉ Radio One’s Today with Seán O’Rourke about the homeless and housing crisis.

During the interview, Mr Murphy told Ms O’Callaghan he’s expecting the figure for the number of people using emergency accommodation in July – expected to be released this week – to increase from the figure of 9,872, including 3,824 children, recorded in June.

From the interview…

What we have at the moment is a very acute supply problem which is being corrected and we can go into that in some detail in relation to the CSO figures.

“…what we saw for the last quarter, was about 4,500 new homes were completed. What we actually need to achieve is somewhere between 6,000 and 8,500 new homes being completed every quarter and then that continuing for a steady period of time.

“We have to move away from these violent swings in our housing output where we go from 90,000 – which is twice too many – people’s properties being overvalued and people then falling into massive negative equity and then, in a few short years, people living in cramped accommodation, trying to raise a family…

“…At the moment, we have about 2,400 [social housing homes] were built last year, another 4,400 will be built this year. At the end of the second quarter of this year, 4,000 were being constructed on site with another 2,000 to go on site.

We’re going to hit our target for increasing the stock of social housing by 50,000 by 2021.

“Importantly though, this year, Miriam, about one in four or one in five new houses that are built will be social housing homes and that commitment maintains for the next ten years.”

“…If you look at 2020 and 2021, under our plans, we will be putting more people in social housing homes than into the private rental sector because we have this commitment to build new social housing homes.

“…Again, looking at the CSO figures, which are independent from my own department, last year about 20,000 places to live were made available, 14,500 new homes were built, another 2,500 homes came out of vacancy – stock that wasn’t being used.

“Another 1,000 homes which had been started before the crash but were never finished were completed and about 2,000 new student bed spaces. So, that’s a dramatic increase.”

“…If you look at something like rough sleeping. This time last year it was far worse than it is now. We’ve seen a dramatic reduction in people who are sleeping rough.

“…I don’t have them [homeless figures for July] yet. We’re still compiling them. My understanding is that they will be slightly up because we are, again, seeing an increase in presentations.

“…My understanding is that the figures have gone up in one particular region which would give me reason to believe that actually they’ll be up overall.

“Whether or not they hit 10,000 this month, I can’t be certain now.

“…Hitting 10,000 doesn’t tell us anything that hitting 9,000 didn’t tell us which is that we have a very serious crisis.”

Towards the end of the interview, Ms O’Callaghan asked Mr Murphy about a report by Daniel McConnell, in the Irish Examiner, last week which claimed some Fine Gael ministers fear their “posh boy” image and failure to solve the housing crisis will “kill” their election hopes.

Mr Murphy said:

“Miriam… it doesn’t matter where I’m from or where I grew up or how I dress or how I look or how I speak, none of these things matter and people who, serious people really who shouldn’t entertain those types of ideas but, unfortunately, some of our politicians and some of our commentators are.

“What matters is: are our policies working?”

“…Fine Gael is the party of the Just Society. Declan Costello – that people growing up would have opportunities, the same opportunities, regardless of who there parents were or what they did…”

“…If people think the problem or our housing crisis is the fact that I am a posh boy from Dublin 4, then they are missing the mark completely…”

Listen back in full here

30 thoughts on “‘Hitting 10,000 Doesn’t Tell Us Anything That Hitting 9,000 Didn’t Tell Us’

  1. Col

    “What we have at the moment had for years is a very acute supply problem which is is not being corrected and we can go into that in some detail in relation to the CSO figures.

    “…what we saw for the last quarter, was about 4,500 new homes were completed. What we actually need to achieve is somewhere between 6,000 and 8,500 new homes being completed every quarter and then that continuing for a steady period of time.

  2. j9

    Eh … yeah it does … it tells us that the crisis is getting worse – despite the likes of him attempting to gaslight the public into believing it’s getting better.

  3. Andrew

    What is this chaps’s background? Has he ever had a job in the real world?
    In his wiki page it says he worked for some U.N. research body after doing an M.A. in International Relations. Now it’s light on detail here. Was he making the tea, how long was it for?
    Was it an internship?
    His blurb read a bit makey uppy to me:
    “Prior to entering politics, he worked in international arms control, mostly in the area of nuclear weapon disarmament. He has worked for various organisations including the United Nations; and in cities such as London, Geneva and Vienna”
    The wiki page references his own Fine Gael page

    Either way he isn’t showing any leadership and seems either unwilling or unable to make radical changes.

      1. Giggidygoo

        And Harris was a dropout. Varadkar wangled ‘extra’ points to enable him move from one course in university to medicine. What a clever lot we have running the show.

        1. Rob_G

          If your best shot at Varadkar is that he took a backdoor into his 7-year medical degree, well, he must not be doing too badly…

          I think that the fact there is no minimum entry requirement to become a TD (other than being elected) is healthy for democracy, stops it becoming an elitist institution. If you think that you can do a better job, there is nothing stopping you forming your own party and running.

          1. Rob_G

            I just think that, as insults go, “he took an easy route into his 7 years of medical school + a couple of years as a junior doctor” lacks a bit of ‘zing’.

  4. dennis

    Seems its a family trait being economical with the truth
    What ever happened to the modual housing?
    A timber home can be supplied for around 22 grand send erected within a week

    1. Papi

      And a Palestinian house can be demolished and the occupants shot in a jiffy, david, what’s your point?

  5. ollie

    Murphy’s figures don’t add up, we can’t build the quantities he’s giving because it requires ramping up from 4,500 a quarter to 16,000 a quarter.

    Here’s the only sentence worht reading in the article:
    “We’re going to hit our target for increasing the stock of social housing by 50,000 by 2021.

    1. Owen C

      what does the 16,000 per quarter (64,000 per year) reference to? Estimates of supply required range from 25,000-50,000

      1. Cian

        “We’re going to hit our target for increasing the stock of social housing by 50,000 by 2021.”
        I doubt it.
        If we have 2,400 last year, 4,400 this year… so that means we still need to build 43,200 social houses between 2019, 2020 and 2021. Or 14,400 per year (or 3,600 per quarter)

  6. Cian

    The problem is our population is increasing year-on-year but there was a 7-year building hiatus. We’ve an extra 372,000 people in Ireland since 2008, and few.

    Year Population Increase (thousands)
    2009 4,533
    2010 4,555 +21
    2011 4,575 +20
    2012 4,594 +19
    2013 4,615 +21
    2014 4,645 +31
    2015 4,688 +42
    2016 4,740 +52
    2017 4,793 +53
    2018 4,857 + 65

    1. SOQ

      No the problem is a government who sat on their hands until it became a crisis. Forward planning it appears only applies to their pensions.

  7. diddy

    The free market remains ring fenced I see.. Here’s one thing that could be done overnight. A serious curtailment of non EU language students piling into to Dublin. And before anyone cries racist this factor is not a drop in on the ocean… We’re talking tens of thousands of homeless Brazilians etc arriving every year.. Is it any wonder low wage Irish and students can’t find a bed in the capital… Who would oppose this? Ibec

    1. scottser

      you don’t just arrive here and sign on and claim homeless.
      it’s called the habitual residency condition.

      1. diddy

        I’m not saying they are applying for social housing… I’m. Saying they need housing.. In a housing crisis…

  8. Giggidygoo

    Maybe he’d be so kind as to list the areas where the 2400 new builds for social housing were this year. If there are figures and locations from the CSO, then he should provide them instead of saying there were ‘about’ 2400.
    If there aren’t exact figures available, then what is he rambling on about.

  9. Verbatim

    I love the hyperbole, they don’t have to be “RebuildingIreland” just build 50.000 homes and have a long-term plan.

  10. dennis

    The cheque is in the post sums up this government
    Sadly for us we will live with the consequences

  11. Pixie Hat

    It doesn’t? That is worrying. It should tell him his housing policy is good for landlords and vulture funds. Not so much for the inhabitants of this republic.

  12. Liam Deliverance

    I don’t care where he comes from or what accent he has, I do care that he is lying about the reality of the situation and that he is more than happy to lie, day in and day out, to those that pay his salary. I don’t think he has done a single days work in his life for those that he is supposed to be working for, he might have some long days but they are done for his own benefit. I also care that he thinks of his dishonesty as mere spin and nothing more and that the longer he hangs about carrying on this sham the harder this issue becomes to resolve.

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