Wednesday 12 December 2018

Housing crisis is also a threat to sustaining jobs

A young person starting a job must, in many cases, find three months’ rent to get across the threshold. Stock Image: Getty
A young person starting a job must, in many cases, find three months’ rent to get across the threshold. Stock Image: Getty
Editorial

Editorial

Most of us are now well aware of the horrors of homelessness and the difficulties families on lower incomes face in getting a home. It is hard to overstate the impact of the housing crisis on children, especially.

But frequently we are also made aware of another effect of our housing crisis, especially in Dublin and the other large population centres. It is the threat to our ongoing economic recovery, and the danger it poses for creating and sustaining more jobs.

Today this newspaper reports that one of the country's leading employers of talented and high-achieving people, the multinational financial services giant EY, is offering interest-free loans to young employees to help them set up in a rental flat.

It tells its own story. A young person starting a job must, in many cases, find three months' rent to get across the threshold. That is a month's rent in advance, and a deposit equivalent to two months' rent. In this era of spiralling rents, that is surely a very tall order.

The practice may well be emulated by other reputable employers in the near future. But it reminds us of the veracity of recent warnings from leading business people that the accommodation crisis could hit efforts to keep attracting high-end investment, which generates well-paid, sustainable jobs.

A place to live at a reasonable market price is not too much to ask for all citizens.

Irish Independent

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