Sunday 22 January 2017

Spiralling rents mean controls are urgently needed - Howlin

Published 19/10/2016 | 12:43

Labour leader, Brendan Howlin, said when his party were in Coalition, Fine Gael blocked their proposals to link rent increases to the rate of inflation
Labour leader, Brendan Howlin, said when his party were in Coalition, Fine Gael blocked their proposals to link rent increases to the rate of inflation

With rents set to increase by 25pc in the next two years, rent controls are urgently controlled, the Dáil has been told.

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Labour leader, Brendan Howlin, said when his party were in Coalition, Fine Gael blocked their proposals to link rent increases to the rate of inflation.

Mr Howlin said tens of thousands of people needed to know the Government cared about their plight – and had a plan of action to deal with it.

He said his party’s housing spokeswoman, Jan O’Sullivan, had a new draft law which proposed limiting rent increases to the rate of inflation.

“If you want people to save up for homes – they can’t do it if rents keep going up,” he said.

The former Public Expenditure Minister said last week’s Budget gave landlords tax breaks; increased the tax free allowance for the “rent-a-room scheme;” and delivered a first-time-buyers’ scheme which will only increase house prices.

But there was nothing for tenants and a new report showed that rent prices are to increase by 25pc over the next two years.

The Taoiseach said landlords must be encouraged to put properties up for rent and the Government was working on plans to increase housing supply.

Mr Kenny said Housing Minister Simon Coveney was working on a national strategy for the rental sector and it would be published before the end of this year.

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