Irish self-builders to receive government backing

The First Home Scheme in Ireland has been extended to self-builders, meaning the shared equity scheme will provide up to 30% of the total build cost.

Cash from the €400m scheme can go towards a self-builder’s mortgage and deposit.

The scheme is currently available to people buying newly-built houses and apartments in private developments, as well as renters purchasing property from their landlord.

Darragh O’Brien, the minister for housing, local government and heritage, said: “I’m delighted that First-Time Buyers who are building their own home are now in a position to benefit from this scheme.

“It’s already been very successful for people buying new houses and apartments in developments and now it’s going to help a new range of people starting out on their home ownership journey.

“This is a particularly important development for people who live in more rural locations or come from a farming background and who have a site, but not the full level of finance they need to build their new home.

“We designed this scheme to be flexible and to evolve so that it can help as many people as possible. We previously extended it to help renters looking to buy their home from their landlord and now it’s the turn of self-builders.”

Applications from self-build customers can be made from Wednesday.

The scheme is available to qualifying homebuyers and self-build customers who are taking out mortgages from AIB (including its EBS and Haven Mortgages businesses), Bank of Ireland or Permanent TSB.

In the scheme’s first year since its launch in July 2022, close to 2,000 buyers in 24 counties were approved and almost 500 homes in 20 counties were bought.

Eligibility for the Scheme was extended to thousands of additional first-time buyers with effect from January 1st, following the widening of eligibility criteria for homes in 30 of Ireland’s 31 local authority areas, with the limit for eligible homes increasing by up to €75,000.

Houses with prices of up to €475,000 and apartments with prices of up to €500,000 are currently eligible for the Scheme, depending on their location.

Approximately 80% of live approvals have been for buyers in Dublin, Cork, Kildare, Meath and Wicklow, with the remaining approximately 20% spread across 19 counties throughout Ireland.