Words: Eva O’Beirne
In a cost of living crisis with homelessness and rents at a record high, please will someone just think of the landlords?
The Irish Property Owners Association said an eviction ban will “dissuade landlords from continuing to maintain properties for rent”.
“It is the IPOA’s contention that such a measure would be disastrous for the sector as it will only serve to dissuade landlords from continuing to maintain properties for rent.
“This year, thousands of landlords sold their properties, stock that was lost to the rental market.”
The IPOA accused the Government of trying to circumvent its housing responsibilities by introducing such a ban, which the group said “further erodes IPOA members’ legal rights”.
The comments came after the Minister for Justice said that the Government will do “everything that we can” to ensure people remain in their homes this winter.
New figures from the Department of Housing show that in the last week of August, 10,805 people were using emergency accommodation, surpassing the previous record of 10,568 people in July.
Focus Ireland has claimed that the official figures do not reflect the reality of homelessness in Ireland, suggesting that the number could be as high as 14,000.
Over 3,000 children are now homeless in Ireland.
Recently, a number of TDs have called for an eviction ban, and Taoiseach Micheál Martin has said Minister for Housing Darragh O’Brien is in consultation with the Attorney General over its introduction “for a limited period”.
It will be interesting to see what form this ‘eviction ban’ will take as almost 80 TDs and Senators are landlords or landowners with some politicians holding substantial property portfolios, the latest register of members’ interests shows.
48 TDs own rental properties or land while 29 Senators also have property and land interests.
Previously this summer, several TDs were caught with having unregistered or undeclared rental properties.
Health Minister Stephen Donnelly admitted that he failed to register a property he rented with the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) until August 2022. The property was first registered with the RTB in 2011, but it had not been registered since 2019.
Donnelly, who owns multiple properties, has earned over 200,000 from renting a house in Dublin since 2006.
According to Residential Tenancies (Amendment) Act 2019, landlords must register their properties with the RTB every year. According to RTB, “Failure to register can result in a criminal conviction”.
If a property is not registered with the RTB, tenants face multiple issues. This includes problems in applying for residency, college places, bank loans, tax allowances and rebates. Tenants in unregistered properties will likely be refused these applications.
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