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Sinn Féin publish motion on standards in the private rental sector – Ó Broin

6 November, 2017 - by Eoin Ó Broin TD

Sinn Féin Housing spokesperson Eoin Ó Broin TD has today published a motion on standards in the private rented sector that will be debated during private members time in the Dáil tomorrow night.

Deputy Ó Broin said:

“Unfortunately, poor standards in the private rented sector are not a new phenomenon.  Sinn Féin representatives have heard countless stories of inadequate and poor conditions that many tenants are forced to endure due to a lack of housing options available to them.

“NGOs such as Threshold, tenants’ rights groups and journalists have also been raising the issue for years. The revelations in last Thursday’s RTE Investigates were therefore shocking but not surprising.

“Since the National Government and Oversight Committee (NOAC) published its report a year ago, we have known there has been a low level of local authority inspections of properties in the private rented sector. This then leads to a low level of enforcement proceedings being issued, resulting in a high level of non-compliance by landlords.

“Local authorities currently do not have a robust inspection regime in place. However we must also bear in mind there has been a 30% reduction of local authority staff since 2008. Also, housing departments are under huge pressure due to increased demand on their services due to the housing and homelessness crisis.

“The Sinn Féin motion calls on the Minister for Housing to set out a plan for ensuring compliance with minimum standard regulations in the private rented sector and for the adequate resourcing of local authorities so that they can put in place a more comprehensive inspection regime. The motion articulates the need for a review of the penalties faced by landlords when they breach minimum standards.

“It also calls on the Government to support the proposal by Threshold for an NCT-type certification system for private rented housing to further strengthen compliance with legal standards. Within the current system, the onus rests on the tenant to report inadequate or a breach of standards. This has a particularly negative impact on vulnerable and lower income tenants.” 

Note: Please see the PMB attached and statistics from the NOAC outlining inspections undertaken below

NOAC inspection rates

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