A Cork-based voluntary housing association has issued an urgent appeal to companies for help in preventing seven families from being evicted.
Carbery Housing Association (CHA), a registered charity, is asking that 200 companies donate just €250 each to make up a funding shortfall, so the evictions can be prevented.
CHA secretary José Ospina said the association had been given approved housing body (AHB) status for the Government’s Mortgages to Rents Initiative.
The scheme is designed for owner-occupiers who are unable to repay mortgages and can opt to have them transferred to an AHB, on the understanding they will remain in their homes as permanent tenants of the association.
CHA is currently negotiating the purchase of some 20 properties in Cork City and county under the scheme. It has seven properties initially lined up to proceed with immediately, and a further 13 properties are in the pipeline.
“The total cost of purchase of these seven properties is €851,500,” Mr Ospina said.
The Housing Agency has further agreed to a subsidy of €186,435 on their purchase.
“The AIB bank has issued a loan offer for €615,815 over a term of 20 years at 4.5% interest,” Mr Ospina said.
“However, they have placed the condition on the loan that we must contribute the balance, which is €49,250 out of our own funds or donations, towards this purchase, or approximately €7,000 per house purchased.
“The reason for this is the bank’s rules on loan-to-value ratios.”
Mr Ospina said it was therefore essential for the future of these families and the mortgages to rent initiative that CHA raise the €49,250 required as soon as possible.
“This would allow us to complete the purchases and any donation at this point would help CHA to purchase some or all of these properties, on the basis of one property purchased for every €7,036 donation,” said Mr Ospina.
“The occupants have been waiting for some months for a decision on this, so their situation is quite pressing. Please help us finish what we have started and help us to provide an appropriate future for these families.”
Mr Ospina added that he hopes 200 companies will be willing to make “a tax-deductible donation of €250 each”.
“This would provide the sum needed to purchase some of these first seven properties and keep these families in their homes,” he said.
“This initial purchase would, in turn, allow us to build up more resources to extend this initiative, and negotiate further purchases to benefit even more distressed owner-occupiers.”
CHA is an association of local people who have come together to develop and provide housing and associated amenities, for a range of households that were excluded from the housing market on the basis of partnership with local authorities and community organisations, and aiming at a high level of energy efficiency and sustainability.
CHA is a registered charity with registration number CHY 14260 and further information on its work can be had by logging onto www.carberyhousing.eu.
© Irish Examiner Ltd. All rights reserved