Over 90,000 dwellings in Ireland are vacant 8 months ago

Over 90,000 dwellings in Ireland are vacant

22,096 buildings have been declared as derelict.

90,158 vacant dwellings were recorded in Ireland at the end of 2021.

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The figure was published in the Residential Buildings Report published by EY and Geodirect on Tuesday (18 January).

The vacant dwellings account for 4.4% of the national housing stock, a 0.1ppt decrease since the same time in 2020.

The lowest residential vacancy rates in the country were found in Dublin (1.4%), Kildare (2.1%), and both Waterford and Louth (2.8% each).

The average residential vacancy rate in Leinster stood at 2.3%.

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Three counties in Connacht contained the highest residential vacancy rates, which had a province-wide vacancy rate of 9.2%.

Leitrim remained the county with the highest residential vacancy rate since 2020, with 13.3% of dwellings there remaining vacant.

After Leitrim, Mayo (11.9%) and Roscommon (11.6%) recorded the next highest vacancy rates.

22,096 buildings were declared as derelict in December of 2021.

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These are defined as a building "which has typically been dormant for several years and requires structural work or reconstruction before it can be re-occupied".

Most derelict buildings were to be found along the north and west coast of Ireland, with the highest percentage share of the national total found in Mayo (13.2%), followed by Donegal (12.0%) and Galway (8.8%).

“The level of housing supply coming onto the market in 2021 was well short of what was needed to meet demand," said Annette Hughes, Director, EY Economic Advisory.

"While the data around residential construction activity in the latter half of 2021 is extremely encouraging, there is still exceptionally high levels of demand in the housing market.

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"This is evident from the significant increase in the average house price, up 9.4% nationally, with price increases recorded in every county.

"Based on our analysis for this report, the 90,158 vacant residential properties and the 22,096 derelict residential properties across Ireland should be investigated to ascertain if they can be returned to the housing stock, a move which would also support our retrofitting targets.”

The Parliamentary Budget Office recently described housing in Ireland as "severely unaffordable" for young people, with house prices increasing by 77% since 2012.