Words: Ellen Kenny
The Estate of Us is a new Dublin art project that refuses to sugarcoat the state of Ireland’s housing market.
Say hello to The Estate of Us, a group of Irish artists posing as Ireland’s “first brutally honest estate agents”. The Estate of Us is a campaign launched by Irish creatives angry about the housing market who want to tell it like it is. Throughout Dublin, they have installed signs reading “Vulture funds only”, “Family home seeks landlord”, and other encouraging real estate mock ups.
While their adverts are full of snark, they’re also hitting the nail on the head. We all see that the Irish government does not prioritise the average homeowner or tenant, and The Estate of Us simply shows Ireland’s priorities loud and clear.
“[The Government] could have built more social and affordable housing, or taken responsibility for providing the basic human right and need of a home for all,” The Estate Of Us’ website reads, “Instead, they favoured landlords, vulture funds, developers and the banks. That’s why, at The Estate of Us, we do too.”
“So if you’re a vulture fund, you have wealthy parents or you are looking for a third home, we’re the people to talk to.”
By drawing attention to the housing crisis, The Estate of Us aims to encourage people to reach out to their local TDs to complain about inaccessible housing in their area. Of course, if the recent string of TD-landlords in the news is any indication, your local TD is probably actually responsible for most inaccessible housing in your area. But maybe a few wake up calls from voters will encourage them to register with the RTB, or actually install fire safety measures in their rental properties.
The Estate of Us have also launched a petition urging the Government to enshrine the right to housing in the Irish constitution. The Government just closed their public consultation regarding a referendum on housing in Ireland on September 2. These submissions will be read and analysed by the Housing Commission, who will make recommendations to the Government on how to proceed.
The average rent in Ireland is now 1,447 euros a month, and it shoots up to 2,260 euros a month in Dublin. Irish house prices just reached the same level as they were at the peak of the Celtic Tiger. It is not an easy time to rent or buy a home in Ireland. But The Estate of Us are reminding everyone that we’re not alone in this situation, and we can take action.
Click here to sign The Estate of Us’ petition.
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