Almost two years since he threatened to withhold rent from Kerry County Council, a Tralee man is still continuing his fight to have the Council address his serious concerns over the living conditions in his council home.
The Kerryman covered Seán Dineen's story and his fight for better living conditions two years ago when he highlighted what he said were numerous issues, including finding snails in his sink and his cutlery drawers; water seeping through the utility room roof; and rotten doors.
Seán - who has lived in the house in Connolly Park for almost 13 years, and who first noticed problems four years ago - said that he felt that he had no choice now but to highlight the living conditions again this week with a tour of his house in which he highlighted, in a video, what he says is the large amount of damp and mould on the walls. He then posted this video online to his YouTube channel.
The video, which he posted last Sunday, starts off with Seán showing what he says to be a large amount of mould on the walls of his bathroom, claiming that the house was inspected by Kerry County Council last October and declared up to standard. This is a verdict that Seán disputes.
Going on, he shows what he says are large areas of damp in the porch area; and the mould in his kitchen, along with the exposed pipes.
He then says that "you wouldn't put cattle in here" before asking out loud about what type of landlords would rent this type of property.
Speaking to The Kerryman this week, Seán said that nothing has changed since his "rent-strike" of two years ago and that he is still fighting to have his home modernised and renovated.
"The reason why I did the video is because I wanted to highlight the conditions and I wanted people to see it for themselves, and I hope that if Kerry County Council see it, then they will have to take some more responsibility. I had an inspector from the Council over to the house back in October, and I was told that they consider the house to be up to the standard of living," he claimed.
"I don't agree with that. These houses aren't up to standard for renting at all. There is rising damp from the foundation and clothes," said Seán.
"It hasn't gotten worse, but maybe that's because I keep having to clean the mould off the walls every three months or so, but it just keeps coming back. I want the house to be renovated, modernised and brought up to standard," he continued.
"A few of the neighbours have told me the same thing, that they are having problems with dampness," he claimed.
He said that he is not asking for much work to be done and that he is simply looking for the council to install a stove and a shower in his home.
"I want the bathroom to be renovated, a shower installed there. It was never done since the house was built. The kitchen needs to be upgraded as well. These houses are just old fashioned and need work and to be modernised," he feels.
In response, the Council said that it has "a strict policy of not commenting on individual cases having regard to an individual's privacy.
"The Council works closely with tenants to address maintenance and other issues on a regular basis."