RTB rental sector data shows no signs that rent pressure zones are working - Eoin Ó Broin TD
Sinn Féin Housing spokesperson Eoin Ó Broin TD has commented on the publication of the RTB rent index for quarter 1 of 2018.
The average annual rent increase across the state is now 7.1%, which shows that rent pressure zones aren’t working.
Deputy Ó Broin said:
“The latest figures published by the RTB show that the average rent across the country is now €1,060, an annual increase of 7.1%.
"In Dublin the average rent for new tenancies is now €1,527, an annual increase of 7.8%.
“Outside of Dublin other urban areas within rent pressure zones are similarly affected, for example Galway shows an increase of 8.3%.
“This shows that the government’s half-hearted attempt to curb excessive rental inflation is not working.
"The rent pressure zone cap of a 4% increase limit is clearly being breached.
“In areas outside the rent pressure zones the annual increases are also worrying.
"In Roscommon it was 9.7%, in Laois 9.7%, in Sligo it was 8.5%, in Limerick 8.9% and in Waterford 6.4%.
“While the Minister for Housing is interpreting the latest figures as firm evidence that rent inflation is on a downward trend based on the last two quarterly reports.
"There have been consecutive quarterly downward trends before that have been followed by spikes.
“Furthermore all the rents used by the RTB for this reports are not current rents as there are no obligations on landlords to register any rent increases with the RTB.
“There are also a number of exempted properties to be factored in. These include new properties to the rental market i.e ones not let in the previous two years and properties that have undergone substantial refurbishment.
“In order to get a clearer picture of what is going on in the rental market we need to see an annual registration of tenancies including up to date rent level with the RTB.
"The RTB also need to be granted greater enforcement powers for policing rent pressure zones and tenancy registrations.
“Ultimately the Minister for Housing must review his opposition to real rent certainty, linking rent reviews to an index like the consumer price index.
"Unless he takes decisive action we will continue to see unsustainable rent increases.”