Bank of Ireland finances Co-operative Housing Ireland in Wicklow

Bank of Ireland financed Co-operative Housing Ireland (CHI), an approved housing body, for delivery of a new €40 million social housing development. The development of 144 family homes in Rathnew, Co. Wicklow, Ireland’s largest social housing scheme of 2019, has just completed with €29 million being provided through Bank of Ireland and the balance through Capital Advanced Leasing Facility (CALF) funding. CHI is the national representative body for co-operative housing in Ireland and manages nearly 3,000 homes across the country.

The scheme was developed by Co-operative Housing Ireland in partnership Wicklow County Council. All homes in the scheme are rented out to tenants drawn from Wicklow County Council’s Housing list. Under the terms the homes are let to tenants on a long-term lease arrangement of 25 years – delivering security of tenure to cooperative members. Rents are income assessed and adjusted according to individual tenant’s means.

With an average purchase price per unit of €279,000 the development comprises a mix of duplexes, apartments and houses The 144 homes are of mixed sizes comprising one, two, three, and four-bedroom units fitted out to the highest of standards, all with a minimum BER rating of A3.

Paul McDonnell, Head of Property Finance Group in Bank of Ireland Corporate Banking said: “We were delighted to support Co-operative Housing Ireland in the delivery of much needed social housing. Funding of social housing is of particular importance to the Bank as we help seek to facilitate the delivery of critical and sustainable social infrastructure within our communities.”

Commenting Padraic Clancy, Head of Business Development, Co-operative housing Ireland, said “This is our first collaboration with Bank of Ireland and we are very pleased to establish an additional source of funding for future CHI projects. We look forward to working with Bank of Ireland on the continued expansion of the co-operative housing sector as a solution to housing needs.

We would also like to recognise that the deal could not have been put together without the support of Wicklow County Council and the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government. In particular we are very grateful to Wicklow County Council for their support.

Under the co-operative housing model, families coming into these homes in Rathnew in recent weeks will become part of the new Avoca Housing Co-operative.”

Frank Curran, CEO Wicklow County Council said, “The provision of these 144 social homes in Rathnew is of significant importance to the people of Wicklow. This collaborative approach to delivery is at the heart of the Council’s supply programme and, of course, part of the strategy contained in Rebuilding Ireland. The Council currently has 18 projects at various stages of construction and tendering, with funding of over €58million already sanctioned by the Department. A further 16 Schemes are under active consideration with a potential yield for a further 260 units by 2021. We are also engaged with Approved Housing Bodies under the CALF and CAS schemes and with private developers who are delivering additional units under Part V.”