Rent prices pierce ceiling

Rent prices, something that seems to always be steadily increasing. In 2016, the Irish government began to take note of a fast moving, upward trend in certain zones and put a price ceiling on rent prices in an effort to regulate these changes. Areas that have a high likelihood to increase rent, specifically because of location and competition, are called Rent Pressure Zones (RPZ). 

These zones are primarily located in the larger cities, such as Dublin, Galway or Cork and have specifications that help to protect renters from exorbitant hikes in monthly prices. Any property within a Rent Pressure Zone are legally not allowed to increase their prices by more than 4pc each year. 

This ceiling in rent increases are intended to create a more affordable market for landlords and tenants so that they can have a good idea of how prices could rise; this is ideal for planning housing opportunities and finances in the future. This program worked for the most part, with many tenants seeing an increase of between 2.4 and 3pc a year from 2016 to 2018. 

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A response to: Housing for homes – a classic case of market failure

A recent blog post published by Tom Healy, director of the Nevin Economic Research Institute, suggested that the current housing market in Ireland is an example of a failed market. Healy believes that the issue of under supply of housing can only be solved if the government expands provisions of social housing and extends its jurisdictions over prices and supply in the housing market.

Healy based his argument upon the assumption that the current housing market has failed and is unable to recover without intervention. He cites a chronic under supply of housing and the inability of government programs to sufficiently meet demand. While there is indeed a under supply of housing and rising prices due to pent up demand, a series of government construction plans such as the 2013 Forfas Strategy, Capital Investment Plan, and Action Plan for Housing and the Homeless, in addition to private investments are expected to dramatically increase housing supply within the next few years. These projects directly address the supply issue by promising 47,000 additional units of social housing before 2021.

The blog post …

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Fianna Fail, the unsung heroes of landlords

Without realizing it, Fianna Fail are helping the property owners, developers and landlords that (at least by reputation) they were associated with in times past, that they are doing it while trying to help tenants is the funny part.

There are 150,000 tenancies in Dublin and Cork that will be affected by the new rent control regulations, but we have to remember the timing of this because December 2016 is a key month for rent reviews and the start of January is also a fairly active month in lettings.

When Alan Kelly changed the rules in late 2015 it meant a lot of (2014 and before) tenants got a passover of a rent review because landlords didn’t have the time to serve notice, new rents also then started to spike as landlords priced in two years of increases upfront.

This means that for many tenants the two year anniversary is up this month. Landlords have to give notice of an increase but the new price kicks in from month 25 (January).

By delaying the current legislation it means that the …

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Rent control in Europe: Austria

Population: 8,662,588 GDP: $386,227,000,000 Avg. Weekly Earnings: €531.00 Avg. Apartment Price (Per. Sq. M.): €10,807.00 For 120-sq. m. apartment in city centre Avg. Monthly Rent: €872.58

The next stop on our trip across Europe, analysing rent control policies and their effects on property markets, takes us to Austria. The Austrian housing market is complicated, even amongst European Union nations which boasts a number of improperly functioning housing markets. However, where many states in the EU began a comprehensive re-evaluation of their housing policy, Austria has failed to do so effectively.

Austrian tenancy protection laws and rent controls stem from the First World War, and despite the changing situation and the decreased shortage of housing, these rules are still in effect. As a result, there exists in Austria a two class society among tenants and landlords, of those whose tenancy is determined by ABGB (General Civil Code) or the newer MRG (Tenancy Statute).

Austrian tenancy laws are plagued by exceptions and counter-exceptions, and as a result, are quite complicated for the average tenant to understand and apply to their situation. Furthermore, …

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Rent control in Europe: Sweden

Population: 9,884,285 GDP: $570,591,000,000 Avg. Weekly Earnings: €842.29 Avg. Apartment Price (Per. Sq. M.): €687.51 Avg. Monthly Rent: €1,252.83

To begin our series profiling the rent control situation in EU countries, we will take a look at the impact of rent control on the private rental market of Sweden, with a focus on the capital city of Stockholm where the city limits are home to 900,000 of Sweden’s 9.9 million citizens. The rental market there is a relevant reflection of the country’s conditions as a whole given the importance of the city to the economy in general.

Sweden has perhaps the most pro-tenant laws in the world, and has been held up as an example for other EU nations investigating rent control legislation. The reasons for the attractiveness of the example are largely because people look at the terms tenants in an existing tenancy face. The issue that arises, however, is that in creating such a tenant-friendly environment, the Swedes have subsequently alienated landlords and generated a dramatic shortage of rental properties, that aspect of their market is rarely raised …

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Newstalk: Pat Kenny & Karl Deeter discuss ‘rent certainty’ and construction

Pat Kenny had Karl Deeter of Irish Mortgage Brokers on his show to discuss ‘rent certainty’ and some aspects of construction as well as why they are both concerns for the Irish housing market.

The issues are important for both sides, prices affect different sides of a contract differently and large swings can be damaging to one or the other of them. The answer in Karl’s view is longer leases which requires no legal changes, but this is not being discussed.

 

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‘Rent certainty’, it’s false promises based on false premises…

The Labour party aren’t fooling anybody with their calls for ‘Rent Certainty’ to be linked to the consumer price index (CPI), unless the nation is populated by financially illiterate people which I don’t believe to be the case. That is why it is correct of Fine Gael to resist measures which have already proven to be ineffective countless times in Europe and elsewhere.

We can take the sabre rattling of foreign investors saying they won’t buy here if we price fix as a given, and we can discount much of the clamour from the usual vested interests in property and instead focus on the economic facts (and fallacies) as they stand.

Firstly, why is it such a con-job? The main reason is that housing is only one aspect of what creates the ‘consumer price index’ and therefore it’s like basing the price of oil on the same thing, you can’t imply the cost of a specific item on the cost of a basket of consumables which are not related.

Correction, you can do whatever you like, it just doesn’t make …

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Morning Ireland airs our idea to help the homeless

We were really pleased that Morning Ireland covered our joint idea with Fr. Peter McVerry on a way to help reduce pressure in the rented sector by giving landlords tax breaks in return for rent-freezes.

The idea is simple, you allow landlords to get full mortgage interest relief and offset their local property tax in return for giving the tenant a ‘rent freeze’, this can be managed via the PRTB who already link in with Revenue on some matters.

The clip explains how it would work, in the piece you’ll hear Fran McNulty discussing this idea with Karl Deeter

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RTE Primetime: Homelessness crisis – a housing problem 24th November 2014

We took part in a panel discussion on homelessness and more importantly in the rise in rough sleepers. This issue was made worse by government policy and the reduction in low end housing at the same time as there was no investment in social housing.

We tried to point out that there are consequences to many policies and that were introduced such as rent allowance cuts in the past.

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