Ireland needs 44,000 new homes annually to meet population growth, says report

Dublin, Ireland – A new report from the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) reveals that Ireland needs an average of 44,000 new housing units each year to keep up with population growth. This study, funded by the Department of Housing, bases its findings on projected population growth and demographic changes at the local level.

According to, the report considers various population projections, including mortality, fertility, and international migration assumptions, to estimate future housing demand. It takes into account factors like household size and the rate at which old houses become obsolete.

Key findings include:

  • 44,000 units annually: Average structural housing demand from 2023 to 2030.
  • 40,000 units annually: Projected demand from 2030 to 2040.
  • Government targets: Current targets are 33,450 units for this year, 36,100 units in 2025, and 36,900 units in 2026.

Minister for Housing Darragh O’Brien stated the research would help revise Ireland’s housing targets. He emphasized the need to consider “pent-up” demand not included in the ESRI report, suggesting future targets might increase to around 50,000 units per year.

The study also explores different migration scenarios, projecting the population could reach between 5.9 and 6.3 million by 2040, depending on migration rates. Most of the housing demand will be concentrated in Dublin and surrounding areas, with 46.4% of the new homes needed in these regions.

Adele Bergin, an author of the report, highlighted the significant implications for housing policy, emphasizing the necessity of around 44,000 new units annually to keep up with population growth. The research suggests that without meeting these targets, Ireland may face a housing shortage in the coming years.

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