Why is the Government so afraid of transparency for renters?

Ivana Bacik TD
28 June 2023
  • In Q4 2022, nationally, rents in new tenancies grew year-on-year by 7.6%
  • The national standardised average rent in new tenancies stood at in Q4 2022 €1,507

In response to the publication of the Residential Tenancy Board’s Q4 2022 Rent Index, Labour Leader and Housing Spokesperson Ivana Bacik TD has called on the Government to pass Labour’s Renters’ Rights Bill and, in particular, to introduce a rent register to allow prospective tenants to see what previous tenants paid before entering a lease agreement.

Deputy Bacik said with average rents for new tenancies in Dublin standing at €2,063 per month, the Government must address renters’ protections in the market and must also grapple with spiralling rents in Rent Pressure Zones.

Deputy Bacik said:

“It is long past time for a comprehensive response from Government to the growing number of people squeezed in a rental market.

“The RTB figures clearly show that renters are suffering hard and deep, asked to pay extraordinary sums of money in rent just to keep a roof over their heads.

“It’s abundantly clear to me that Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil are totally out of touch with the reality of the housing crisis. There is not a day that goes by without people contacting my office looking for help and conveying to me the turmoil which is caused by the housing disaster, high rents, and insecurity of tenure.

“If passed, Labour’s Renters’ Rights Bill would go a significant way towards guaranteeing security and affordability for renters.

“For example, it provides for a public register to be put in place which would set out the number and length of previous tenancies and the rent paid and previously paid.

“It would also list the refurbishment and renovation works that purportedly led to eviction. All of these measures are essential if we seek to redress the current imbalance between renters and landlords.

“We are frustrated that the Government has disengaged from this Bill, having previously committed to working with us on it back in 2021.

“Rather than looking at how these policies can be implemented, the Government prefers to denigrate our proposals and, by extension, those renting families across the country who are crying out for change.

“Who could argue against an open transparent rental register to allow individuals who wish to rent – and possibly have to rent – to find transparent information about the previous rental costs for the property they might be interested in? That is fair and reasonable. Why is the Government so afraid of transparency for renters?”

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