Cash for Crap Houses: Ireland & NAMA

Ronan Lyons has the story on the idea that NAMA should become a hands-on property management company. Long story short, it is a very bad idea. But you knew that.

Allow me to be very cynical for a moment and, just as a thought experiment, assume NAMA does become such a property management company, because of political and regulatory capture, say. I'd value everyone's comments on this, simply because I'm worried a version of this idea is in the backs of  minds of a set of vested interests.


NAMA will obtain houses in targeted regions all over Ireland, specifically the areas where the boom went last, and then bulldoze them, collapsing supply back to, say, 2002 levels. NAMA can also use some of the newly constructed dwellings for social housing and amenity projects.

NAMA can then offer current homeowners a twenty percent rebate for the building of new homes, or a straight cash for crap houses swop, where we upgrade the housing stock for everyone overnight, so someone in an uninsulated bungalow can get a brand-new house for, literally, nothing. NAMA can bulldoze the old house to further restrict supply.

This would help boost the construction and associated industries, create job growth and allow for legions of people to get back on an artificially constructed 'property ladder'.


Someone please tell me I'm wrong about all this. I'm sure I've missed a step somewhere along the way.

Also posted on the TASC Blog.

3 Replies to “Cash for Crap Houses: Ireland & NAMA”

  1. While cynicism is understandable given the nature of FF, I don't see this as a viable conspiracy theory. Where would NAMA get the money to do all this?

  2. I think I can confirm you're wrong. If you were right, then why stop at houses? Why not destroy other buildings and capital and generate an even bigger re-builing boom? I think its something to do with having to actually pay for it all.

  3. Hi M, NAMA has the money to do this from our taxes. I'm just trying to be ultra-cynical to start a row about this.

    @ Kevin,

    Having to pay for it all isn't an issue--we have 54bn to play with, at least, and thousands of properties to work with here, I think cash isn't the primary problem, especially if this only got rolled out over, say, 20,000 houses or so.

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