Rental figures all over the country are rising in what is described as a ‘volatile’ market.
Any Irish person can tell you anecdotally that the rental market in the country at present is perilous, with Ireland firmly in the grip of a massive housing crisis. New figures from the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) reveal just how stark Ireland’s accommodation problem really is.
The board maintains the national register of private residential tenancies as well as tenancies of approved housing bodies. It also provides avenues for tenants and landlords to resolve disputes and issues.
2016 – The busiest year on record for the RTB
The RTB reported that 2016 was its busiest year since its establishment in 2004, with more than 130,000 calls dealt with in its call centre – a 10pc increase from 2015 – as well as more than 50,000 email queries registered.
Tenants staying in rented accommodation for longer spells of time is a growing trend, with Ireland’s rental sector now comparable to many of its European counterparts. With this pattern emerges the urgent need to address the current rental market.
“This means we have to adjust and transition to a rental sector that is no longer geared towards renting as a temporary solution prior to home ownership, but a rental sector that can support short- and long-term renting,” read the report.
Considerable changes have been made since the 2015 report was issued, including the implementation of Rent Pressure Zone (RPZ) coverage and other rent certainty measures. These changes have played their part in the rapid increase of 160pc in dispute applications about rent reviews since they were introduced.
Dublin rents well above national average
Rental prices countrywide have shot up, with Dublin increasing by 37pc since 2012 to the monthly rate of €1382, while the national average rent increased by €70 to €954 per calendar month.
The largest number of disputes between tenants and landlords revolved around deposit retention, rent arrears, overholding and invalid notice of termination by landlords.
Rosalind Carroll, director of the RTB, said: “2016 saw the introduction of Rent Pressure Zone areas, which now cover 55pc of all tenancies. In these areas, rents cannot increase by more than 4pc and our focus is to create an understanding of what is a very complex legislative framework.”
The introduction of Rent Pressure Zones coincides with the spike in calls and emails received by the RTB.
Updated, 11.28am, 30 August 2017: This article was amended to clarify that the 37pc rate of growth in Dublin rent is since 2012.