Minister Coveney confirms Local Authority Homes cost €180,000


Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council exemplar Passive Standard refurbishment of Rochestown House complex in Sallynoggin pictured

b65e7601470bb8349b6a2588704b158c06 December 2016

Minister Simon Coveney confirmed average building costs for conventional Local Authority directly procured social housing for a various dwelling types in the following Dáil exchange on 29th November 2016.  The cost for 3 bed homes ranged from €154,560 (outside Dublin) to €205,250, an average cost of €180,000 (incl VAT).

A Local Authority 3 bed home is almost half the price of the Society of the Surveyors of Chartered Surveyors Ireland (SCSI) cost estimate of a typical developer-led house of €330,493 (incl VAT) built in the private sector (see SCSI house cost here).

The figures quoted by Minister Coveney are also significantly lower than the projected cost of ‘rapid’ units in his Rebuilding Ireland housing proposal currently estimated at €243,000 (incl VAT) each.  ‘Rapid’ builds take the same length of time as conventional homes to complete and the rationale behind the State opting for a slower and significantly more expensive housing type are unclear.

Link to Dáil exchange here.

“Clare Daly (Dublin Fingal, United Left)

267. To ask the Minister for Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government if he will provide data (details supplied) on the projected cost of construction of social housing, excluding in all cases the cost of land procurement. [37043/16]

Simon Coveney (Cork South Central, Fine Gael)

In relation to information sought for averages of various social housing costs, the following are the relevant figures based on current unit cost ceiling data prepared from tender returns utilised within my Department.

  • average cost per square meter of social housing construction in Dublin = €2,046;
  • average cost per square meter of social housing construction outside of Dublin= €1,524.

The average cost of construction of various housing units including all works within the site curtilage and a contribution towards development of common areas of the overall development (footpaths, roads, lighting etc), are as follows:

  • 2-bed social housing unit in Dublin = €191,850;
  • 2-bed social housing unit outside of Dublin= €141,445;
  • 3-bed social housing unit in Dublin= €205,250;
  • 3-bed social housing unit outside of Dublin = €154,560″

Other posts of interest:

Fabric first retrofit rejuvenates Dublin social housing –

Have only 20 council houses been built this year? |

Is Government policy making the housing crisis worse? Lorcan Sirr | Ronan Lyons

Building Regulations Reform & the Housing Crisis | Irish Examiner

Defective “Celtic Tiger” projects | The Cubes, Sandyford

Cost of “Self-Certification” | Surveyors & Architects Fees

All you need to know about ‘modular’ housing | ‘Rapid Answers’

FACTCHECK 4 | Dáil + Construction Costs

Fewer than 90 social housing dwellings completed in 2014

Room for improvement on social housing policy

2 thoughts on “Minister Coveney confirms Local Authority Homes cost €180,000

  1. Michael O'Neill

    So we not have proof of what we suspected all along: –

    The Market provides only for itself, fleecing the consumer to the tune of 100% profits.

    Even the so-called Rapid-Build glorified prefabs are atrociously overpriced according to these figures

    What exactly are right wing capitalists claiming that the Free Market model can do so well?

    It can do NOTHING well except generate vast profits for the few, beggaring the rest of us.

  2. Michael Tweed

    Before you get too hot and bothered about anyone being fleeced you should check out the SCSI report on “The Real Cost of New House Delivery” (
    This makes very interesting reading. The report comes out with a new house cost for a 3 bed semi of €330,493. The build cost – the equivalent to what Simon Coveney is reporting – is only €150,251 or 45%. The final cost is also based on a margin of 11% which is actually 4% below the standard 15% margin which most financial lenders look for as a development return to ensure final work-out of their loan. The cost also only makes an allowance of 2% on professional fees – which I would say is low considering it also seems to include for BC(A)R. VAT on the other hand accounts for 12% of the final cost! And between Levies and VAT, €51,060 of the final sale cost or almost 15.5% goes to the government! The report highlights that in the UK there is 0% VAT on new house costs! The report uses real time data which shows that second hand house prices are below the cost of new houses – which is the main reason why developer aren’t piling into house and apartment building – not because they are greedy, Michael!
    Local Authorities building their own social housing – as opposed to providing social housing through Part V of the Planning Act – is cheaper simply because the housing can be built by the LA’s at cost!


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