Minister of State with responsibility for Housing, Paudie Coffey has disputed figures provided by Fianna Fáil, which suggest the true figure for those waiting for social housing is 130,000.
However he said it was reasonable to assume that the number was higher than the figure of 90,000 being used by the Government.
Speaking on RTÉ’s Morning Ireland, Mr Coffey said that he did not agree with Fianna Fáil's figures because they were based on a snapshot in time taken from the local authority waiting lists around the country.
He said the Government was using the Housing Agency figures from 2013 because it had research capability and captured reliable information.
Mr Coffey said the housing lists were changing all the time and various factors come into play.
He said an individual's circumstances may have changed, for example they may have gotten a job and no longer needed social housing.
"A lot of those figures would have duplicity in them, a lot of those people would have left the housing list even since.
"There are changes in people's circumstances, sometimes people's housing need would increase and sometimes it be removed altogether where people would go off the list.
"Now it is reasonable to assume it has risen since 2013, I will acknowledge that and that is why every year from now on we will have reliable information captured by the Housing Agency who are the independent agency in this regard." Mr Coffey said.