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19 Jan 2022

'Pensioners should not be blocked from buying their own homes' — Kildare Senator

'Pensioners should not be blocked from buying their own homes' — Kildare Senator

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A Kildare Senator has said that it is their belief that pensioners should not be blocked from buying their own homes.

Fianna Fáil Senator Fiona O’ Loughlin made the comments while saying that she welcomed the Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage Darragh O’Brien TD's announcement that Cabinet have approved changes to the Tenant Purchase scheme to enable pensioners to purchase their own home.

Her comments follow after the Senator last week welcomed Minister O' Brien's newly expanded loan scheme.

Senator O’ Loughlin said: "I am pleased to see Minister for Housing Darragh O’Brien TD delivering another significant change to how we provide housing in this country: pensioners should not be blocked from buying their own homes and this change will ensure that that does not happen."

"The main change which Minister O’Brien will be implementing is to reduce the level of income tenants will require to be eligible – this will reduce from €15,000 to €12,500... this will ensure pensioners can now qualify to purchase their home under the scheme: the change will only apply to pensions.

She continued: "The Programme for Government commits to maintaining the right of social housing tenants to purchase their own home.

"Fianna Fáil has placed home ownership at the heart of Housing for All, our long term housing policy to 2030."

The Newbridge native stressed that while the news is very welcome, and that it "will ensure that many people in South Kildare will be eligible to purchase their local authority home", she still believes that a system needs to be put in place to ensure that tenants of co-op housing schemes are given the same opportunity to own their own home.

"At the end of the day, that’s what many of them were promised."

"I would reiterate my call for the boards of management of local co op schemes to consider strongly this option, and I will continue to advocate for them at a national level," she concluded.

The changes in the Tenant Purchase scheme will be effective from the February 1.

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