The housing market lacks loans, new houses are left unsold, building workers are losing their jobs and young people have no hope of owning their own homes.

A reduction in employment in the building sector is evident on building sites across the country. On one building site alone, where six months ago there were twenty bricklayers, twenty four carpenters and around eighty labourers, there are now four brickies, five carpenters and only nineteen labourers. 

Michael Green of the Construction Industry Federation (CIF) describes the fall in employment in the industry and the lack of loans available. The CIF carried out a survey of fifty building firms and the findings indicated a fall in sales of 24% in the second half of 1984. 

Evidence to corroborate these findings can be found on a housing estate in Kilbarrack, Dublin where about half the houses, priced at £9,200, are unsold and empty. 

This has had a trickle down effect whereby builder's suppliers have reported unsold stock and layoffs. The pessimistic outlook is shared by a newly married young couple with a child who believe at this rate that they will never own their own home.

We're living in one room and we don't see any prospects of ever getting a house.

This episode of 'Seven Days' was broadcast on 18 February 1975. The reporter is Brendan O'Brien.