The construction manager says the concrete levy could increase the price of a new house by as much as €3,000

A construction industry representative has warned that the concrete levy introduced yesterday in households will be passed on to customers.

A new surcharge of 10 percent will be imposed on some concrete products – including concrete blocks – under the government’s plan to offset the multi-billion dollar cost of the mica compensation scheme.

The levy is expected to remain in place for several years as the government struggles to fund the Glimmer redress scheme, which could cost between €3.6 billion and €4 billion to complete.

Conor O’Connell is Director of the Irish Home Builders Association (IHBA), the advocacy group for home builders across Ireland.

He said the IHBA is still working out exactly how much the levy would add to the cost of new builds, but it could range from €1,500 to €3,000.

“Obviously that depends on the type of property you’re developing, the type of house you’re building, the size of the house … but there are costs, and there are significant costs,” he said.

“There was no advice as to the impact this cost increase would have on the industry, what it would mean for the consumer, how much additional cost a first time buyer would have to pay to buy their own home for example, I’m not sure the RIA on it the economic assessment related to the impact of this levy on the consumer has been transferred.”

Speaking of RTÉ Tomorrow IrelandMr O’Connell said industry officials “understand the dilemma” the government faces in order to fund the mica compensation scheme, but he argued that the specific tax was “not a levy on the industry”.

“The way this is really going to work is it’s a levy on the first-time buyer, it’s a levy on the buyer, it’s a levy on someone trying to expand their home, it’s a levy on licensed housing associations trying , you know, affordable and socially deliver homes. So the way it currently works is a levy on the consumer. In fact, all cost increases, all input costs ultimately have to be borne by the consumer and that is our main concern in this regard,” he added.

“I would not accept that small and medium sized home builders are making very large profits across Ireland. In fact the opposite is true… Only recently has it become economically viable to build houses for sale in many parts of Ireland and the reason this has been so marginal is because of the cost of development and so on is not just because of the construction costs, but because of the regulatory costs and other taxes and levies that are ultimately imposed on the consumer, the first-time buyer, and the purchase of new homes.” The construction manager says the concrete levy could increase the price of a new house by as much as €3,000

Fry Electronics Team

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