Apartment Owners’ Network Welcomes Appointment of Mr. Seamus Neely as Chair of Independent Working Group on Defective Housing

Apartment Owners’ Network Welcomes Appointment of Mr. Seamus Neely as Chair of Independent Working Group on Defective Housing.

The Apartment Owners’ Network has welcomed the announcement by the Minister for Housing, Darragh O’Brien T.D., that former Chief Executive of Donegal County Council, Mr. Seamus Neely, has been appointed as Chair of the newly established Independent Working Group on Defective Housing.

Network Director, Des McCabe, said: “The establishment of the Working Group is a very welcome development and a necessary first step in the resolution of an issue that is threatening to cripple the finances of many apartment owners and owners’ management companies throughout the country. Mr Neely will bring a significant breadth of experience to his role as Chair – in particular, his involvement in the remediation process in Donegal for pyrite and mica will be of great benefit.

The Network along with the Construction Defects Alliance looks forward to playing an active role in the Working Group. We are acutely aware of the tight timeframe – it is imperative that the Group’s recommendations can be considered in time for the preparation of Budget 2022. Financial solutions for the estimated 100,000 apartment owners are required urgently.

The Network continues to call for the recommendations of the 2018 “Safe as Houses?” report published by the Oireachtas Joint Committee on House, Planning and Local Government, to be implemented. Of particular relevance for this issue is the recommendation that the government should establish a redress scheme to assist homeowners with latent defects.

The sustainability of higher-density residential accommodation in Ireland is dependent on public confidence in the quality of Irish apartments. The resolution of the longstanding issue of defective construction in multi-unit developments must be addressed to ensure that apartment living is a viable long-term option for both current and future generations.

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