28 Jun 2022

Refurbishment and reletting of Longford County Council housing stock needs to be quicker

Paul Ross

Fine Gael Cllr Paul Ross

Cllr Paul Ross has called on Longford County Council to prepare a tender for contractors to apply to refurbish the reletting housing stock to try and deal with the huge backlog in getting council houses refurbished and reoccupied by new tenants.

“We were given a report earlier on this year from the year 2020 which was stating that our reletting time is an average of 49 weeks,” he said, comparing to other counties which have a significantly lower turn around.

“We have families getting letters that they’re getting a house but when you get a letter last April twelve months that you’ve got a house and you’re still not in it, that is utterly unacceptable.

“I’m getting phonecalls every week, and so are my colleagues, asking when will the house be ready and I have absolutely no answer.”

Cllr John Browne, in support of the motion, suggested that the council recruit additional staff - a couple of carpenters and a couple of electricians - to get jobs done faster.

Meanwhile, Cllr PJ Reilly highlighted the issue of the loss of the house and the loss of revenue as a result of the long turnovers, suggesting that it be cut back to three months to keep that loss to a minimum, while getting tenants in as soon as possible.

Director of Services Samantha Healy said the council is currently undertaking a review of how the schedules of works will take place and how the works are being prioritised.

“I would hope there would be some improvements to those relet times in response to the changes we’re making there,” she said.

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