Posted: Mar 29, 2023 By: Communications Research area:  Design, Supply, Place
Housing Unlocked - Making it Happen

In October 2022, the Irish Architectural Foundation and The Housing Agency launched the Housing Unlocked exhibition. Running until mid-February 2023, this exhibition showcased eight innovative ideas to create more and better housing for our communities.
The exhibition garnered significant public and media interest and enthusiasm. Over24,000 people visited the exhibition, and 75 public engagement events were held.

The innovation shown at the Housing Unlocked exhibition showcases the talent within Ireland’s housing sector. This innovation can help Ireland meet its housing delivery targets as outlined in the government’s Housing For All programme. However, some changes to the Irish housing sector are required in order to introduce these solutions. They include new planning exemption classes; changes to planning guidelines; policy changes; engagement with stakeholders such as local authorities, central government and Transport Infrastructure Ireland; changes to building regulations; launching pilot schemes of projects; and fiscal support.

Housing Unlocked started with a single aim - to give people working in housing, primarily architects, an opportunity to showcase their expertise, by providing ideas to improve Ireland’s housing sector. The competition began with an Open Call which was launched in February 2022. Proposals were sought that provided practical ideas and creative thinking in the areas of vacancy, regeneration, compact growth, construction technologies and social inclusion. A jury of high-profile international judges selected eight winning submissions from the fifty-plus received. Each winning team received €7,500 in funding to develop their proposals into an exhibition piece.

This document outlines the eight projects and summarises the actions required to turn these ideas into a reality. We hope that this information can be useful to those working in the areas where such actions might be achievable. We welcome the prospect of continuing discussions with these parties and hope to be able to progress some or all of these wonderful ideas exhibited.

To read the full document please visit this link: Housing Unlocked - Making it Happen


Posted: Mar 29, 2023 By: Communications Research area:  Design, Supply
Guide for use of PW-CF2 Public Works Contract for Building Works Designed by the Contractor

The Housing for All plan makes provision for innovations to improve, support and accelerate delivery of housing. In support of this strategy, the Housing Agency Procurement and Delivery Unit will supply technical services and supports in the area of modern methods of construction.

The Housing Agency's Procurement Unit have developed this guidance document as a contractual mechanism for encouraging the use of Modern Methods of Construction through the use of Capital Works Management Framework, PW-CF2 Public Works
Contracts for Building Works Designed by the Contractor.

To read the document in full please visit this link: Guide for use of PW-CF2 Public Works Contract for Building Works Designed by the Contractor.

Posted: Nov 21, 2022 By: Communications Research area:  Housing Attitudes & Aspirations Series, Demand, Supply, Place
Residential Satisfaction during the Covid-19 Pandemic in Ireland 2020

This study is the third in the Housing Agency series National Study of Housing Experiences, Attitudes and Aspirations in Ireland. Previous reports were published in 2018 and 2019. The 2020 National Study of Housing Experiences, Attitudes and Aspirations in Ireland aims to measure householders’ satisfaction levels with homes and neighbourhoods, and also their future housing aspirations.
The study took place in December 2020, ten months into the pandemic. The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on householders was assessed through new questions.

Key Findings, can be found in report

Cover of report

Download the Residential Satisfaction during the Covid-19 Pandemic in Ireland 2020.

Posted: Mar 30, 2022 By: Communications Research area:  Social Housing, Design, Supply, Place
Social Housing  in Mixed Tenure Communities

A report being launched today (31st March), commissioned by the Housing Agency and the Irish Council for Social Housing (ICSH) and carried out by Professor Michelle Norris and Dr. Aideen Hayden of UCD finds that strong and integrated communities have developed among the private and social housing residents in mixed tenure estates, and that there is overwhelming support for tenure mixing as a key policy to combatting socio-spatial segregation. Over the past twenty years, the percentage of Approved Housing Body (AHB) owned or managed social housing located in mixed tenure estates has increased from 20% to 78.2%; this reflects state policy objectives and measures such as Part V.

The report, Social Housing in Mixed Tenure Communities, looks at social housing provided by approved housing bodies (AHBs) in mixed tenure developments, the reasons why decisions are made to cluster or disperse social housing in these estates and how well these models work from both AHB staff and tenant perspectives. An important key finding is that both clustered and dispersed social housing has worked well, despite the consensus in favour of the dispersal of social housing. ‘Tenure blind’ design of mixed tenure housing was considered more important (in both the research literature and case study interviews) for the integration of residents of different tenures than the location of the social rented dwellings. This can be applied in both clustered and dispersed settings.

The report also identifies that high standards of housing management are important for the success of mixed tenure estates but that management can be challenging, particularly in view of the stigma that still attaches to social housing. Approved housing bodies’ strong record in this regard is identified as another factor contributing to the success of the case study estates.

Speaking at today’s launch Donal McManus, ICSH Chief Executive says:

“This report documents a success story that needs to be shared. The majority of the AHB tenants, private owners and private tenants interviewed for the research agree that tenure mixing is positive. Also, initial homeowner preconceptions about AHBs and social residents becoming their neighbours, were alleviated over time. Interviews with social residents reveal that community integration in general is of greater importance than the location of their home, and that non-housing amenities, such as playgrounds and inclusion in residents’ committees can help cement the bonds of community. Critically too, the research interviews with AHB CEOs and staff did not identify any great difficulty in the management of mixed tenure over single tenure estates. The sector has the skills and knowledge required.”

The research identifies additional factors, such as procurement and funding models, as well as estate design, which influence the delivery and location of social housing in mixed tenure estates. A significant finding of the analysis is the important role that social housing plays in underpinning the financial viability of market housing provision in mixed tenure estates. The practical advantage for social landlords of purchasing whole apartment blocks for social housing, and the benefits this offers to developers faced with the upfront financing required to develop apartment blocks is helping to drive the clustering of this tenure. The report calls for a holistic assessment of the impact of residential density guidelines (intended and unintended) and research on ways of achieving density without relying entirely on high-rise.

Co-Author of the report, Professor of Social Policy and Director of the Geary Institute for Public Policy, UCD says:

“This research represents important learning for us. The socio-economic issues arising from the spatial concentration of low-income households and the impact of social mixing have been much studied internationally. However, the volume of Irish research has been small. The lack of information on tenure mixing in Ireland represents a critical knowledge gap and its implementation as a policy may also be challenged given current developments in housing policy. This research aims to bridge these information gaps and raises important considerations for housing policy such as design (tenure blind) and layout, the tenure mix of neighbouring communities, density issues, appropriate funding to support management fees and planning and housing policy to support the monitoring of socio-spatial segregation.”

 Bob Jordan, Chief Executive of the Housing Agency added:

“The Housing Agency is strongly committed to promoting sustainable communities through mixed tenure. Approximately eight out of every ten homes owned or managed by Approved Housing Bodies are in mixed tenure estates and this proportion is likely to grow in the years ahead. This research shows that tenure mixing can improve the quality of life of the residents of all tenures and it can benefit surrounding neighbourhoods as well. Key to community integration is ‘tenure blind’ design, good estate management, the provision of amenities including playgrounds and community centres, and the work of residents’ associations. The Housing Agency is pleased to have supported this research and we look forward to advancing its recommendations.”

A video recording of the event is available on our YouTube channel here


About The Housing Agency

The Housing Agency is a Government body working with the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage, local authorities and Approved Housing Bodies in the delivery of housing and housing services. The Agency’s vision is to achieve an integrated housing system, meeting the nation’s housing needs and promoting sustainable communities. It does this by providing evidence-based housing insights and data that inform thinking and policy-making; by working with others to enable the delivery of housing solutions and to implement programmes and actions in Government housing policy; and by equipping itself and its stakeholders with the capacity required to respond quickly and effectively to challenges in the housing system. For more information, visit or follow The Housing Agency on Twitter and LinkedIn.

About the Irish Council for Social Housing

The Irish Council for Social Housing (ICSH) was established in 1982 and is the national social housing federation of nonprofit voluntary and other national housing associations. The ICSH represents approximately 270 member organisations that own and manage 45,000 homes and house 100,000 people including families on a low income, older people, disabled people and households experiencing homelessness. ICSH members operate in every local authority area in the country and in over 500 communities across Ireland.

About the Researchers

Professor Michelle Norris is UCD Head of the School of Social Policy, Social Work and Social Justice and teaches social policy on the Bachelor of Social Science and Master of Public Policy degrees. Her teaching and research interests focus on housing policy and urban regeneration, particularly on: the management and financing of social housing; the regeneration of social housing estates and inner urban areas; comparative analysis of housing provision in Europe and the history and socio-economic implications of Irish housing policy and its relationship with the welfare state. She has led over 20 research project on these issues since 2000 and produced 50 publications on the results. In 2011 she was appointed by the Taoiseach as an independent member of the National Economic and Social Council (NESC) and in 2012, was appointed by the Minister for the Environment as Chair of the Board of the Housing Finance Agency.

Dr Aideen Hayden is a PhD graduate of the school of Social Policy, Social Work and Social Justice and received a 2016 UCD Alumni Award for Social Science. She is a former Senator (former Seanad Eireann Spokesperson on Housing, Children and Youth Affairs, Spokesperson on Finance and Spokesperson on European Affairs, as well as Vice-Chair of the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform). For almost three decades, Aideen has served as Chair of Threshold, the leading advice and advocacy organisation working on behalf of tenants in the private rented sector.


Social Housing  in Mixed Tenure Communities Report Social Housing in Mixed Tenure Communities Report
Social Housing  in Mixed Tenure Communities Report Summary Social Housing in Mixed Tenure Communities Report Summary
Posted: Jun 20, 2019 By: Paul Mooney Research area:  Owner Occupied, Supply
Owners' Management Companies, Sustainable Apartment Living for Ireland

This research was jointly commissioned by Clúid Housing and the Housing Agency and conducted by independent researchers. The report "Owners' Management Companies - Sustainable Apartment Living for Ireland" examines current issues for Owners' Management Companies around service charges, sinking funds, the MUD Act, volunteer directors, etc.  It explores international best practice; delivers research findings on the sector and recommends reforms. 

Posted: Mar 01, 2019 By: Philip Crowe Research area:  Demand, Supply
Incentives for the Re-Use of Vacant Buildings in Town Centres for Housing and Sustainable Communities in Scotland, Denmark and France

This report, commissioned by The Collaborative Working Group for Housing and Sustainable Living, and funded by The Heritage Council of Ireland, examines the reuse of vacant buildings in town centres. Authored by Dr Phillip Crowe, it examines the reuse of vacant buildings in town centres.  The research was funded by the Heritage Council of Ireland

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Posted: Mar 01, 2019 By: Philip Crowe Research area:  Demand, Supply
How Data on Vacancy is Created and Used: Case studies from Scotland, Denmark and Philadelphia

This report, commissioned by The Collaborative Working Group for Housing and Sustainable Living of which the Housing Agency is a member, examines how data on vacancy is created using a case study approach.  Authored by Dr Philip Crowe, it examines vacancy data in Scotland, Denmark and Philadelphia.  The research was funded by the Housing Agency.

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Posted: Jan 01, 2018 By: Aideen Hayden & Bob Jordan Research area:  Supply
Rebuilding the Irish Neighbourhood

This report, funded by the Tomar Trust and published by the Housing Agency, examines mixed tenure developments and looks at evidence in Ireland and internationally, as well as opportunities that exist to progress mixed tenure developments.  It includes a checklist of features that promote the highest chance of success for such developments.

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Posted: Jan 01, 2018 By: Housing Agency , Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government Research area:  Supply
Resolving Unfinished Housing Developments: 2017 Annual Progress Report on Actions to Address Unfinished Housing Developments

This is the sixth annual progress report and seventh housing survey on tackling the issue of unfinished housing developments. This includes the results from the 2017 National Housing Development Survey which tracks progress on unfinished housing developments since 2010. 

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Posted: Jan 01, 2018 By: The Housing Agency Research area:  Supply
Comparison of Residential Construction Costs in Ireland to Other European Countries

This study examines residential construction costs in Ireland compared to a range of comparable European counties.  The comparable countries included in the Agency’s study are: United Kingdom (UK), Germany, the Netherlands, and France. These countries were selected because they have comparable climatic conditions, economic characteristics and construction labour costs to Ireland.  

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