Rebuilding Ireland Council Home Loan Scheme a missed opportunity

I have urged my Government colleagues to change the rules around the new Council Home Loan Scheme to facilitate older houses that need refurbishment.
The new scheme has a fixed interest rate of 2% over the lifetime of the mortgage. This is very attractive for first time house buyers.
However the loan scheme does not include funding to carry out refurbishment works to second hand houses. This is a missed opportunity.
By including the refurbishment works first time buyers could purchase houses which are vacant in need of repair.
‘In my capacity as Minister of State with responsibility for Rural Affairs I see that there are many closed up properties in our towns and villages.
‘If the loan scheme was adjusted to include these type of houses we could repopulate town and village centres and bring life back in to the centre.
‘I confirm that I have had discussions with Minister Eoghan Murphy and Damien English. Both Ministers are very interested in broadening the scope of the loan to allow for refurbishment costs to be included in the loan.
‘It makes sense as it will provide young couples with the opportunity to own their own homes and bring vitality back in to our towns and villages.
This is in keeping with the programme for Government.’