Across Ireland, thousands of people are living in homes with serious fire safety and structural defects. Some have made the news, many have not. Defects: Living with the Legacy of the Celtic
Tiger tells the horrifying story how these people came to be trapped in dangerous homes.
In this follow-up to his hugely popular Home, Eoin Ó Broin reveals how decisions made by governments from the 1960s to the 1990s led to an alarmingly light-touch building control regime. When combined with the greed of Celtic Tiger-era property development, this allowed defective properties to be built and sold in huge numbers to unsuspecting victims. The results are clear. Families are living in fire-defective and structurally unsound apartments and houses across the state, and homes in Donegal, Mayo and elsewhere are literally crumbling apart as a result of mica and pyrite in defective building blocks.
Who was responsible? Why did they get away with it? And who will foot the bill to fix these potentially fatal defects? These questions and more are answered in this hard-hitting and shocking investigative work.
About the Author
Eoin Ó Broin is a TD for Dublin Mid-West and Sinn Féin’s spokesperson on Housing, Local Government and Heritage. He is author of Matxinada, Basque Nationalism and Radical Basque Youth Movements (LRB, 2003), Sinn Féin and the Politics of Left Republicanism (Pluto, 2009) and Home: Why Public Housing is the Answer (Merrion Press, 2019). He writes regularly on housing policy issues for a range of newspapers and online publications.
Praise for Defects
‘Defects is a valuable prism focused on the problems of developer-led construction in Ireland…a clear-sighted and invaluable contribution to a discussion where there is very much at stake.’
Adrian Duncan, The Irish Times
‘A devastating critique of a political system in which the power of vested interests ensured that the state abrogated its duty to protect homeowners and tenants. Eoin Ó Broin details the human cost of the self-certification of building regulations that was in place until recent years and asks whether even now we have a regime fit for purpose.’
‘In a biting polemic, but backed up by plenty of evidence and research, Eoin Ó Broin, the Sinn Féin TD for Dublin Mid-West, underlines the serious and continuing impact of the Celtic Tiger on the Irish housing market…This book is a very necessary reminder of what can go wrong in unchecked housing expansion.’
John Kirkaldy, Books Ireland