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Rent freeze needed until housing supply picks up, says Senator Moynihan

Gary Ibbotson 14 Jan 2022

Labour housing spokesperson Senator Rebecca Moynihan said with Ireland’s rents now at the upper end of housing cost figures in Europe, the Government must implement a rent freeze until more homes come into supply.

Senator Moynihan says that “structural changes” are needed to alleviate the pressure on renters.

“Eurostat figures show Irish rents increasing by almost 70% in the last 11 years,” she said.

“That is unsustainable and almost unbelievable given that we know people’s wages have not seen the same increases.

“Indeed, with the cost of living rising, renters are hit again with the increased cost of heating their home and paying for travel.

“The failed policies of Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil have not worked and are not working.

“What we need now is a rent freeze to stem the crisis in the rental market while we wait for more supply to come on stream.

“We know we can have an effective rent freeze, because Alan Kelly introduced this very measure for two years in 2015. It has been done before and can be done again.

“We also need proper enforcement of rental caps. Despite the 4% rent cap, last year there was a 7% increase in rents in three quarters of the country.

“Only 29 people were sanctioned for it last year, yet every single county has places where people are breaking rental caps.

“After years of private market failure, we must provide for a new model to tackle the housing crisis and it is time we took radical action to provide our people with homes.

“The supply crisis can only be sustainably resolved through long-term State action that delivers affordable housing once and for all.”

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