Over 1,500 pyrite redress requests approved last year

The body which oversees works to reverse pyrite damage in properties received more than one application every day last year and believe it will be 2020 before the rate of repair work begins to slow.

The 2017 annual report of the Pyrite Resolution Board to the Minister for Housing revealed that by the end of last year, 1,963 applications had been received, of which 1,523 had been approved for inclusion in the scheme to facilitate the remediation of houses and apartments suffering significant damage due to pyritic heave of floors and where the owners have no other practicable options for redress.

It said 945 dwellings were remediated and works contracts were in place for a further 139 dwellings.

The scheme has been in operation since February 2014 and last year 392 remediated dwellings were returned to the homeowners before the end of 2017.

According to the report foreword, written by PRB chairman Jack Keyes: “The rate of applications received during 2017 averaged approximately 39 per month.

“The number of applications remains strong and is attributed to homeowners being more proactive in seeking remediation of their homes.

“Considering the number of applications received in 2017 and the likelihood that this will continue in 2018, the programme of remediation will continue at a significant level for 2018 and 2019 and it is expected to continue at a reduced scale thereafter.”

The average all-in cost of remediation in 2017 was approximately €70,000 per dwelling, although the board said efforts were made to keep public costs to a minimum.

The report said some homeowners did face a longer wait than others and stated: “The PRB and the Housing Agency are acutely aware at all times of the difficulties and stress which have been endured by home- owners whose homes have been damaged by pyrite.”

A total of 26 valid appeals have been submitted from the inception of the scheme, 11 of which were received in 2017, while expenditure on the pyrite remediation programme amounted to almost €26m last year.

Works have taken place in seven local authority areas.

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