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Tenure: Ownership and Right to Occupy: Whose Home is it Anyway? Ray Cashell Shelter Northern Ireland NUI Galway: Contemporary Housing Issues in a Changing.

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Presentation on theme: "Tenure: Ownership and Right to Occupy: Whose Home is it Anyway? Ray Cashell Shelter Northern Ireland NUI Galway: Contemporary Housing Issues in a Changing."— Presentation transcript:

1 Tenure: Ownership and Right to Occupy: Whose Home is it Anyway? Ray Cashell Shelter Northern Ireland NUI Galway: Contemporary Housing Issues in a Changing Europe. 20 th April 2012.

2 Ray Cashell. M.Sc. CIHCM. Civil Engineer by qualification; Queens University Belfast. Worked for the Students Union [USI and NUSUK] Founder member of SHAC Housing Association set up by USI/NUSUK NI Region in Worked for SHAC 1978 – NI Federation of Housing Associations; Council member ; Vice-chair Chair Council member Homeless International 1991 – Now in active retirement. Founder member Shelter NI Campaign for the Homeless, 1980, now Chairman. Committee member Council for the Homeless NI. Part time lecturer in Housing Studies, University of Ulster. 2 Ray Cashell: Contemporary Housing Issues in a Changing Europe. NUI Galway 20/04/2012

3 Housing Tenure: key questions. What is a Home, and what rights should attach to your ability to remain in your home? Who really owns their home? Who can afford to? What is the big attraction in home ownership orowner-occupation? Choice in selection, purchase and sale. Right to alter / extend / replace [incl. self-build] Right to pass on as inheritance. Capital appreciation; long term low cost. What does ownership mean? 3 Ray Cashell: Contemporary Housing Issues in a Changing Europe. NUI Galway 20/04/2012

4 Housing Tenure: Key questions 2. How and why can you be removed from your home? Default; change of ownership; end of term? Why should other people trading your home as a commodity affect your right to occupy? Different sectors Short term and Periodic leases; Private rental Social Rental Long leases; leasehold ownership Levels of title in Great Britain and Ireland. Differences and similarities; Northern Ireland hybrids. 4 Ray Cashell: Contemporary Housing Issues in a Changing Europe. NUI Galway 20/04/2012

5 Housing Tenure: Key questions 3. Issues relating to rented housing and security of tenure. Recent and current trends, and some older perspectives. Feudal / medieval basis of current relationships, especially the terms Landlord and Tenant. 20/04/2012 Ray Cashell: Contemporary Housing Issues in a Changing Europe. NUI Galway 5

6 Housing Tenure Issues: Why now? Demands for reduced security to incentivise market. Changing models for Social and Affordable Housing. Mixed use developments; mixed tenure residential. Use of private sector; 2 models; referral of tenants or Leasing and sub-letting by Social Agencies. NAMA. Re-structuring NI Housing Executive. Market collapse and re-possession where owners default on buy-to-let mortgages. 6 Ray Cashell: Contemporary Housing Issues in a Changing Europe. NUI Galway 20/04/2012

7 Towards a 21 st Century model? Directions and principles [?] in rental; social and private. Long leases of apartments. New tenure models; commonhold and co-operative tenure. Range of Social tenancies; Access routes and rationing mechanisms [priority/eligibility] Co-ownership; rental part of agreement. Succession. 7 Ray Cashell: Contemporary Housing Issues in a Changing Europe. NUI Galway 20/04/2012

8 Propositions: In the Business of renting property; a regulated business? Towards a standard set of occupant residential rights possibly modelled on the UK Secure Tenancy framework. Find new terminology to replace Landlord, Tenant, Tenancy, concept of occupier and other interested parties. Define and limit grounds and methods for re-possession. New options for financial default esp in 3-party situations. Define division of benefits/profit on termination. Define obligations to repair / provide for repair. 8 Ray Cashell: Contemporary Housing Issues in a Changing Europe. NUI Galway 20/04/2012

9 The Government Role? To regulate to ensure everyone can access affordable secure and good quality housing: Human Right Issue and social imperative. To intervene and facilitate, subsidise or guarantee in individual cases where citizens cannot obtain housing in a regulated market. To intervene to protect anyone suffering exploitation in seeking to obtain/retain a secure and sound home. Sounds little but is a lot. 9 Ray Cashell: Contemporary Housing Issues in a Changing Europe. NUI Galway 20/04/2012

10 Examples of Government intervention? To Regulate: Confirm commitment to Human Rights Declaration. To regulate standards of housing and construction. To ensure availability of land. [Planning, Zoning, vesting] To ensure affordability of rents. To limit property speculation [See EU rules on price inflation]. Prohibit exclusion practices against anyone entitled to reside in the state. To provide full legal security of tenure and succession in all tenures. 20/04/2012 Ray Cashell: Contemporary Housing Issues in a Changing Europe. NUI Galway 10

11 Examples of Government intervention; 2. To Intervene individually: Facilitate delivery of not-for-profit affordable accommodation [currently labelled social and affordable]. Provide state welfare based housing cost payments in cases of poverty. To Protect: Enforce fair trading and terms of contracts rules. Provide accessible arbitration / adjudication for disputes. Prosecute harassment. Regulate rents and charges. 20/04/2012 Ray Cashell: Contemporary Housing Issues in a Changing Europe. NUI Galway 11

12 Conclusion Simplify residential property title to: Freehold Leasehold. Regulate to Harmonise leasehold terms giving full security. Remove power of third parties to evict. Properly address title issues for apartments. Protect and Respect the right to a home. Acknowledgement: This presentation and accompanying paper draw on a number of legislative and public report sources. 20/04/2012 Ray Cashell: Contemporary Housing Issues in a Changing Europe. NUI Galway 12


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