Figures show 500 notices to quit issued to Cork tenants during third quarter of 2022
The Sinn Féin TD for Cork East, Deputy Pat Buckley, has called for cross party constituency support for his party’s motion for an extension to the eviction ban.
The motion, which is due to come before the Dáil for debate next Tuesday with a vote to be taken the following evening, comes following the Government’s controversial decision not to extend the ban beyond the end of this month.
It comes after Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) figures showed that 500 notices to quit were issued in Cork alone over the final quarter of prior to the introduction of the ban in October.
Unanimously agreeing to lift the eviction ban, the Cabinet did promise new measures would be put in place, including tax incentives, aimed at encouraging landlords to remain in the rental market.
The measures also include schemes to give tenants first refusal if a landlord decides to sell the property they are living in and allowing housing agencies and local authorities to buy tenant homes put up for sale by landlords.
While they can currently only buy properties if the tenant is in receipt of a social housing payments, this is to be extended to all tenants.
However, details of the two schemes have yet to be published.
While Housing Minister Darragh O’Brien admitted lifting the eviction ban would put more people at risk of homelessness, he said it was necessary in order to prevent more landlords do not exit the rental market.
However, the decision to life the ban has come in for much criticism, not just from opposition TD’s, with Green Party TDs Neasa Hourigan and Patrick Costello calling for the moratorium on the ban to continue.
The Sinn Féin motion comes after figures from the RTB showed that 4,971 notices to quit had been issued by landlords across the country during the three months leading up to the introduction of the eviction ban last October.
The figures showed that 500 notices to quit were issued in Cork during the period - (10.5% of the total number).
The RTB revealed the vast majority (60%) of the overall national total of notices to quit were issued due to the landlord intending to sell the rental property.
The RTB figures for the third quarter of last year represented a significant increase on the period from April-June, when there were 1,666 notices issued, with 1,132 issued during the first three-months of last year.
While Government sources said the rise in the figures was due to a new method of recording notices to quit, tenants issued with eviction notices ahead of the ban now face the very real possibility of being asked to leave.
Deputy Buckley said that with emergency accommodation across the State “at breaking point” many those facing being evicted next month “will have nowhere to go.”
Deputy Buckley has called on his fellow East Cork TD’s, Deputies Sean Sherlock (Lab), James O’Connor (FF) and David Stanton (FG) to support the Sinn Féin motion for an extension to the eviction ban.
“Next month 500 eviction notices will fall due in Cork, with these families and individuals now facing being made homeless due to the Government’s decision to end the eviction ban,” said Deputy Buckley.
“Where are they supposed to live? The reality is that most of them will have nowhere to go,” he added.
Deputy Buckley said it was “blatantly clear” that the Government has no plan in place to deal with the volume of eviction notices that will come into effect in April, or those that will fall over the following months.
“It is unacceptable that we have heard nothing from the Taoiseach, Tánaiste or Minister for Housing about what support those people will receive in the coming months. It is even worse if government TDs in Cork are willing to stand over that. That is why they must support our motion to extend the ban on evictions,” said Deputy Buckley.
“They can work with us to urge the Government to see sense and extend the ban on evictions, and put in place an ambitious series of emergency measures in the months ahead to reduce the number of people becoming homeless and increase and accelerate the supply of social and affordable homes,” he added.