Shifting sands of housing policy make it hard to build solid future

With demand continuing to outstrip supply, the state must smooth the path for development rather that creating yet more hurdles

Cairn’s Mariavilla in Maynooth, a new development of family houses where Hooke & MacDonald reported strong sales to first-time buyers since the scheme launched in August. In spite of a rise in house completions, stock still fell far short of demand. Picture: Ken Walsh

Ireland has a dysfunctional property market. To this day, the scars of the downturn of 2008 have meant that the country has struggled to scale-up housing supply to meet the requirements of the population.

The consequences are particularly acute for apartment development, where multiple complexities and risks have resulted in minimal development since 2008. This is causing significant hardship and anxiety for much of the population, especially younger people.

Ireland, a small open economy on ...