'Rapid build' homes will take almost a year to complete

Work began this week on 39 modular houses at a site in Finglas.

Dublin's latest batch of 'rapid build' homes will take eight months to complete.

Work began this week on 39 modular houses at a site at St. Helena's Drive in Finglas.

A new study by Savills released this week says that a 300% increase in vacant units is needed before rents will stabilise, predicting an increase of up to 23%. 

Some 24.5% of all households in Dublin are now living in private rented accommodation – a 61.3% increase since the beginning of 2011.

Hugh Brennan, General Manager at the O'Cualann Co-housing Alliance, told Newstalk's Pat Kenny Show this morning that eight months is not an unreasonable timeframe.

"I don't think that is bad," he said. "You have to give the houses time to dry out - and they're starting in the middle of winter."

The first 22 houses on Balbutcher Lane in Ballymun were to have been finished last December, but families did not move into the homes, which cost €180,000 each, until May this year.

A tender for the next four sites, in Finglas, Darndale, Cherry Orchard and Drimnagh, was advertised by Dublin City Council last December, with a completion date of June this year for all 131 homes.

However, last March the council cancelled this tender, saying it had received an “insufficient number of applicants who confirmed they would be able to meet the deadline in order to conduct a competition”.

Minister for Housing Simon Coveney previously said that the properties would be ready for tenants by this December. His ambition is to have 1,500 modular homes provided by 2018.