Sinn Féin Housing spokesperson Eoin Ó Broin TD’s bill that provides for the establishment of a latent defects redress scheme to assist homeowners has passed first stage in the Dáil this afternoon.
This Bill creates a redress scheme which provides a resolution to homeowners who bought their homes in good faith and who should not be held liable for the costs of remediation caused by the incompetence and/or negligence developers.
Deputy Ó Broin said:
“The Latent Defects Redress Bill 2019 that I have introduced today establishes a latent defects redress scheme to assist homeowners in remedying issues, such as fire safety and other structural defects that have been uncovered in their homes.
“This scheme will lay out a number of solutions, which will include an information and advice service for homeowners. A mediation service will be offered to disputing parties to see if a resolution can be found between the developer/builder and the homeowner. If mediation is not an option, the scheme will issue legally binding adjudications on cases.
“Where builder/developers are still trading, the original developer should pay for the remediation works. However, in cases where the developer is no longer trading, the scheme will administer a compensation fund for homeowners that will be paid for by a levy on the construction industry and will be matched on a euro-for-euro basis by the Exchequer.
“Under the scheme, a programme of risk assessments for latent defects including fire safety and water ingress and related structural defects will commence. The scheme will also conduct a review of the existing sanctions for developers/builders who breach building and fire safety standards.
“In the first instance, the original builder/developer should be held liable for defects for which they are responsible. However, the government also has a responsibility as the poor building regulations in place during the boom did not tackle the bad building that was happening.
“I hope this piece of legislation will have cross party support.”