Sunday 11 December 2016

Just 3,600 properties available to rent all over the country

Published 09/02/2016 | 07:50

The rental crisis intensifies with just 3,600 properties available nationwide
The rental crisis intensifies with just 3,600 properties available nationwide
Ronan Lyons

The rental crisis has intensified after the number of properties nationwide available for rent hit a 10-year low.

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According to the latest report from property website, Daft.ie, there are only 3,600 properties across the country available for rent, the lowest number since the reports began in 2006.

In the report Daft chief economist, Ronan Lyons, drew the conclusion that the lack of housing has been caused by a drop-off in construction paired with a growing population.

Mr Lyons told RTÉ's Morning Ireland, the lack of accommodation has intensified over the last number of years.

"The previous low had actually been in 2015 but even if you go back a bit in time there had even twice as many properties to rent even two years ago.

"If you go all the way back to when the market was as tight as it is now in 2007, even then there was about 4,500 properties to rent to this is uncharted territory, albeit only going back to 2006," Mr Lyons said.

The report shows that south County Dublin still remains the most expensive area to rent with the average rent in the area at €1,625.  Meanwhile, Lietrim remains the cheapest area in the country to rent at €468.

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"In one sense we've made a vice out of a virtue," Mr Lyons said. " We have a growing population and a recovering economy and that's showing in improving incomes but more importantly for the housing market its a greater number of households and families starting every year."

"We have more demand every year but we don't have new building taking place," he said.

In his report the Daft economist said that a lack of lending from banks doesn't amount to a completely feasible reason for the lack of construction, given the increase in commercial property activity.

"Some of the reasons given for this lack of construction sound plausible at first glance but don't stack up. For example, it is often said that banks won't lend like they used to, or that Irish developers are either too bust or too greedy to build. But none of that explains why Dublin in particular is witnessing such a boom in commercial construction activity, especially new office space," Mr Lyons said in the report.

Mr Lyons also recommended that understanding the unique blockages holding back housing supply should be made a key issue for the next government.

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