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Latest News

Latest Data from RTB Quarterly Rent Index

Mar 29, 2017

⦁ PRIVATE SECTOR RENTS GREW BY 7.8% ACROSS THE COUNTRY AS A WHOLE IN Q4 2016

⦁ PRIVATE RENTS IN DUBLIN NOW 8.3% ABOVE 2007 PEAK LEVEL; 2.7% BELOW PEAK FOR WHOLE COUNTRY.

⦁ EXPANDED RENT INDEX CAPTURES RENT LEVELS BY LOCAL ELECTORAL AREA.

⦁ TWO ADDITIONAL LOCAL ELECTORAL AREAS MEET THE DESIGNATION CRITERIA FOR RENT PRESSURE ZONES: COBH AND MAYNOOTH.

Wednesday 29th March 2017: Growth in private sector rents continued across all regions of the country in the final quarter of 2016, according to the latest Quarterly Rent Index from the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB).

Private sector rents across the country as a whole grew by 7.8% year on year from Q4 in 2016, and the standard national average rent in the final quarter of last year stood at €986 per month.

Overall, nationally, rents are now 2.7% below the 2007 peak. Outside of Dublin, houses are 11.1% below the 2007 peak level, while apartments are 5.8% below, although rents have been steadily increasing since the beginning of 2015.

Demand in Dublin increased significantly in Q4 2016, reflected in an 11.1% increase in rents for apartments. Rents in Dublin are now 8.3 % greater than the Q4 2007 peak. The growth in rents for apartments was more pronounced than for housing, now standing at 12.3% above the 2007 peak, compared to 5% for houses.

Looking at the quarter-on-quarter picture, at a national level, the growth rate increased at a rate of 2.7% and, in Dublin, rents for houses and apartments in Q4 2016 were up by 3.3% and 4.2% respectively. Outside Dublin, the pace of growth in rents for houses slowed by 0.3% in the quarter, while the pace of growth in apartments quickened.  In 2016 the average quarterly growth in the Dublin Rent Index exceeded the equivalent growth rate in national house prices, growing 2.2% compared to 1.4%.

The RTB Rent Index, compiled by the Economic and Social Research Index (ESRI), has also now been expanded and this edition, for the first time, also reflects the inclusion of more localised geographical information, based on analysing rents for each Local Electoral Area (LEA). The data captures local rental price variations more accurately and allows for disaggregation of standardised rents across all LEAs.
This, more granular, data is used to determine what areas are designated as Rent Pressure Zones (RPZs); that is LEAs where rents increased by 7% or more in four of the previous six quarters and where the average rent is above the average standardised national rent.

Since legislation providing for the establishment of Rent Pressure Zones (RPZs) was introduced, LEAs in the counties of Dublin, Cork, Galway, Wicklow, Meath and Kildare were designated as RPZs by Minister Simon Coveney. Now, following the findings of the RTB Q4 2016 Rent Index, two additional LEAs will meet the designation criteria for rent pressure zones: Cobh and Maynooth. 

Commenting on the new, expanded format of the index, the RTB Director, Ms. Rosalind Carroll, said the RTB had sought “to provide this information as soon as possible to all concerned - tenants, landlords, estate agents, central government, local authorities and other State agencies - so that all users can benefit from this more granular-level information, and relate the information contained in the Index to the rules governing the establishment of the Rent Pressure Zones”.

Ms Carroll added: “The Rent Index report shows that rents in Dublin and the surrounding commuter counties, along with Cork and Galway Cities, are among the highest relative to the standardised average rent. These results reflect a rental market that remains volatile with restricted supply”.

The Rent Index for Q4 2016 was based on 26,276 tenancies registered. The methodology to enable the provision of data at the LEA level has been adapted and tested and, therefore, the Rent Index can now provide a better picture of local markets. It remains one of the most authoritative reports on the private rented sector.

Private Rental Market by Numbers

Location

Dublin was still the largest rental market in Q4 2016, accounting for around 38% of the total.

Property size and type

Two and three-bed properties are still the most common on the market and, combined, they make up around 69% of the market. Nationally, the most common property type is apartments, accounting for 43% of the total; and the second most common properties on the market are semi-detached houses.

Rents and house prices

The pace of growth in the Dublin rent index exceeded that of house prices in Q4 2016, growing 2.2% compared to 1.4%. Although there was an increase in rents outside Dublin, the growth was moderate at 0.6%.

Distribution of rents

Around 44% of properties are being rented for between €100-200 per week, while rents of more than €300 per week now account for 23% of the total. 

About the Residential Tenancies Board and the Rent Index report

We are a public body set up to support and develop a well functioning rental housing sector.
Our role is to resolve cheaply and speedily disputes between landlords and tenants, maintain a national register of tenancies and supply data and advice on the sector. Our remit extends to the Approved Housing Body sector, as well as the private rental sector.

The work of the RTB can be divided into three main areas;

REGISTRATION

 

  • All private residential landlords and Approved Housing Bodies, who are not for profit housing providers, often referred to as Housing Associations, are obliged to register their tenancies with the RTB. By 2016 year end, there were 325,372 tenancies registered with the RTB and it has a public register of tenancies available on its website (www.rtb.ie) . The registration of tenancies enables the RTB to collect important data on the sector, but is also a key part of regulating the sector and ensuring landlords and tenants are aware of their rights and responsibilities.

DISPUTE RESOLUTION

  • Since 2004, the RTB has replaced the courts in dealing with the majority of disputes between landlords and tenants through its Dispute Resolution Service. This service offers a choice of resolution types to parties, mediation or adjudication. By 2016 year end, the RTB had received 4,837 applications for dispute resolution, our highest number to date.
INFORMATION AND ADVICE
  • The RTB provides high quality information and advice to the public, tenants and landlords on the rights and obligations in terms of both living and providing accommodation in the rental sector. The RTB also provides high quality data on the rental sector, such as the Rent Index, which allows it to monitor trends in the rental sector, but also allows individuals to check and compare rents in particular locations.

 

The RTB continuously strives to improve and develop its services so that its customers are supported in registering with the RTB, resolving disputes, and accessing information.

Rent Index Report – Additional Information

Methodology

A technical description of the new model and how it compares with the older approach is contained in the technical appendix on page 24 of the Rent Index Report.The older RTB index is constructed following the practice of the Central Statistics Office when constructing the Residential Property Price Index and uses a “rolling” time dummy hedonic regression model.
The old model, because it provided results at aggregated levels (National, Dublin, and ‘outside of Dublin’), worked very well and is still useful in providing detailed analysis on differing trends between apartments and houses; the distributions of rents, and analysis of the Dublin and ‘outside of Dublin’ markets. 
For the new index, on the other hand, an alternative approach is required whereby the model is estimated over the entire time period (2007 Q3 to 2016 Q4), and time dummy variables are then included in the hedonic regression to capture the change in the index for each LEA.

The results from the new model present a near identical assessment of national trends in rents to that which emerges from the older model, and in the calculation of standardised rents, the difference is marginal. It is particularly important to note that in no instances would the transition from the old to the new model result in a different Rent Pressure Zone treatment of a Local Electoral Area.

In the interests of transparency, the RTB will continue to provide data using both methodologies for at least the next two quarters in order that confidence is maintained in the integrity of the index.

Heat Maps
Given the large amount of regional information now available, the expanded Rent Index now presents the results through the use of “heat-maps”, with different colours assigned to different criteria: 
⦁ whether the LEA has an annualised growth rate in excess of 7 per cent for four of the last six quarters;
⦁ whether their average standardised rent is above, or below, the national average; and
⦁ where both conditions prevail and a resulting Rent Pressure Zone should be designated. 
The “heat” maps on pages 7 and 8 of the Rent Index report show that LEAs mainly centred around Dublin, Cork and Galway experienced both conditions.

 

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Working Group on Tax / Fiscal Treatment of Rental Accommodation Providers public consultation launched

Mar 13, 2017

  • The Rebuilding Ireland – Strategy for the Rental Sector, published by the Department of Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government in December 2016, committed to the establishment of a Working Group to examine and report on the tax treatment of landlords (or rental accommodation providers), and to put forward options, where appropriate, for amendments to such treatment. 
  • The Working Group is chaired by the Department of Finance and its membership includes officials from Department of Housing, the Revenue Commissioners and the Residential Tenancies Board.
  • During the process of developing the Rebuilding Ireland strategy a public consultation was undertaken by the Department of Housing on a broad range of issues relating to the housing market.  A number of taxation issues were raised in the responses received to this consultation and the Working Group has decided to conduct a focused consultation seeking further detailed input from interested parties on these matters.

The Minister for Finance, Mr. Michael Noonan T.D. has today launched that tax-focused public consultation, which will run for a period of four weeks to 7 April 2017. Speaking about the Tax and Fiscal Treatment of Landlords Consultation, Minister Noonan said:

“Ensuring sufficient, stable and sustained provision of housing that is affordable, in the right locations, meets people’s different needs and is of lasting quality is one of the greatest challenges facing the country, and addressing that challenge is a key focus for the Government.”

“This consultation will inform our thinking and will ensure the design of better solutions without undue delay. ”

The public consultation is at the following link:

 

http://www.finance.gov.ie/what-we-do/tax-policy/consultations/taxation-rental-income-%E2%80%93-can-tax-or-fiscal-measures-support

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MINISTER EXTENDS RENT PRESSURE ZONES TO 12 ADDITIONAL LOCAL ELECTORAL AREAS

Jan 27, 2017

Minister Simon Coveney has announced the extension of Rent Pressure Zones beyond those introduced for Dublin and Cork cities in December 2016. Analysis of rental data by the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB), has identified the following Local Electoral Areas (LEA’s) as Rent Pressure Zones with effect from today, Friday, 27 January 2017:

  1. Ballincollig-Carrigaline, Co Cork
  2. Galway City Central
  3. Galway City East
  4. Galway City West
  5. Celbridge-Leixlip, Co Kildare
  6. Naas, Co Kildare
  7. Kildare-Newbridge
  8. Ashbourne Co Meath
  9. Laytown-Bettystown, Co Meath
  10. Ratoath, Co Meath
  11. Bray , Co Wicklow
  12. Wicklow, Co Wicklow
There are 26 towns included in these Local Electoral Areas including, Sallins, Rathagan, Slane, Julianstown, Duleek, Dunboyne, Dunshaughlin, Enniskerry, Douglas and Passage West.

Rent Predictability Measures are the new provisions enacted under the Planning and Development (Housing) and Residential Tenancies Act 2016 (the “2016 Act”) that are intended to moderate the rise in rents in the parts of the country where rents are highest and rising, and in areas where households have the greatest difficulty finding accommodation they can afford.  In these areas, called Rent Pressure Zones (“RPZ”), rents will only be able to rise up to a maximum of 4% per annum.

What is the role of the RTB in relation to these measures?

Outlining the process, the Director of the RTB, Ms. Rosalind Carroll, said that the Housing Agency, “following consultation with the Local Authority concerned, proposed a number of areas to the Minister for consideration. The Minister then requested the RTB, which collects and monitors the data on rents, to assess whether the relevant criteria applied to these areas using the rent information that informs the RTB’s quarterly Rent Index. The RTB confirmed to the Minister that out of the 15 LEA’s referred by the Housing Agency 12 have met the criteria set down in the recent legislation. The 3 areas that did not qualify were Greystones, Cobh and Maynooth.”

“To qualify as a Rent Pressure Zone, the average rent of an area must be above the national rent of €973 and have demonstrated high levels of rent inflation in accordance with the legislation. The addition of these 12 LEA’s will mean that approximately 55% of the population in rental accommodation are now renting within a Rent Pressure Zone. No other referrals have been made to the RTB and it is understood that the Housing Agency do not propose any other areas for consideration as Rent Pressure Zones at this time”, added Ms. Carroll.   

The criteria for designating an area as a Rent Pressure Zone are:

  • The annual rate of rent inflation in the area must have been 7% or more in four of the last six quarters, and
  • The average rent for tenancies registered with the RTB in the previous quarter must be above the average national rent in the quarter (the National Standard Rent in the RTB’s Rent Index Report). This was €973 in the last published quarter of the Rent Index, Q3 2016.

Not all rental properties in Rent Pressure Zones are covered by the 4% annual rental restriction. Properties that have not been let at any time in the previous two years, and properties which have been substantially refurbished, can be exempted from the measure. However, the pre-existing requirement that the rent set for a property must be in line with local market rents for similar properties in the area still applies.

A ‘substantial refurbishment’ must be a significant change to the dwelling resulting in increased market value of the tenancy. This would involve significant alterations or improvements which add to the letting value of the property; repainting or replacement of white goods would not be sufficient.

For landlords of all new tenancies within the Rent Pressure Zones that commenced on or after 24th December last, they are entitled to review the rent annually. And where rent reviews take place annually the permissible rent increase in each case will be up to a maximum of 4%. If, for example, a landlord opts to review the rent after 18 months (instead of one year) the allowable increase will be 6% (4 % per annum pro-rata for 1 ½ years).

Outside the Rent Pressure Zones, a landlord can only review the rent once in any 24 month period, and cannot review within 24 months of the commencement of the tenancy except in limited circumstances such as substantial refurbishment of the property which affects the letting value of the dwelling. The Residential Tenancies Act prohibits the landlord from setting a rent that is in excess of market rent.  If a landlord intends reviewing the rent, they must inform a tenant, in writing, of any review in rent 90 days before the new revised rent is due to take effect.  Landlords must show that the rent set is not above the local market rents for similar properties and three examples of rents for similar properties in the locality must be presented to demonstrate this.  A valid notice served by the landlord must be in the prescribed form which can be found at www.RTB.ie.

Market rent for properties situated outside of a Rent Pressure Zone is defined as a rent that a willing tenant not already in occupation would give and a willing landlord would take for the dwelling, having regard to other terms of the tenancy and the letting values of dwellings of a similar size, type and character to the dwelling and situated in a comparable area to that in which it is situated. 

Commenting on the wide range of changes that have been introduced, the RTB Director, Ms. Carroll, said that “security of tenure for both landlords and tenants is essential, if the rental sector is to be both an attractive option for tenants and a safe and viable investment choice for investors”.

She said that one of the overall aims of the new rental strategy is to move towards a situation where longer term tenancies are the norm.  To that end, she points out that among the reforms in the Government’s new legislative package tenancies of four years’ duration are now extended to six year tenancies.

“This will apply to all new tenancies that come into operation on or after 24th December 2016 which includes a Further Part 4 tenancy that comes into existence on or after 24th December 2016”. Landlords currently can terminate within the first six months of a tenancy without giving a reason. Once a Part 4 tenancy comes into existence it can only be terminated by using one of the following grounds, she added:

  • The tenant has failed to comply with the obligations of the tenancy (having first been notified, in writing, of the failure, and given an opportunity to remedy it.)
  • The landlord intends to sell the dwelling within the next 3 months
  • The dwelling is no longer suited to the needs of the occupying household
  • The landlord requires the dwelling for own or family member occupation
  • Vacant possession is required for substantial refurbishment of the dwelling
  • The landlord intends to change the use of the dwelling
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Coveney Designates New Rent Pressure Zones

Jan 27, 2017

Minister for Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government, Simon Coveney, T.D., signed Orders today (26 January, 2017) designating 12 new LEA's as Rent Pressure Zones. These new LEA's are Ballingcollic - Carrigaline, Co. Cork; Galway City Central, East and West; Celbridge - Leixlip Co. Kildare; Naas, Co. Kildare; Kildare - Newbridge; Ashbourne, Co. Meath; Laytown- Bettystown, Co. Meath; Rathoath Co. Meath; Bray Co. Wicklow; and Wicklow. If you want to check if you are in an RPZ please use our rent calculator

Dublin and Cork City were designated as Rent Pressure Zones before Christmas.

The Orders take effect tomorrow, 27 January 2017.

Speaking today Minister Coveney said “in making these designations today, I am delivering on the commitment I gave when I published the rental strategy on 13 December.

At that time the only areas that met the qualifying criteria were Dublin and Cork. I indicated though that I would work with the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) to ensure that more refined data was available to allow for more specific targeting of the measure to other areas of the country where severe pressures were being experienced.

We have made very significant progress in a short space of time to have this new system in place and to ensure that we can properly target this intervention towards those areas facing the most severe pressures. Over the medium term though, additional supply is the right way to address rental pressures.

We need now to ensure that the supply side response is strong and swift by implementing the full range of complementary supply measures contained in the rental strategy”.

Minister Coveney is signing the Orders today on foot of recommendations from the Residential Tenancies Board that found that the criteria for designation as RPZs had been met in 12 local electoral areas in Kildare, Meath, Wicklow, Galway City and Cork County.

The Minister had asked the RTB to assess a list of areas submitted to him by the Housing Agency for possible designation. In consultation with local authorities, the Housing Agency looked at rental markets around the country to identify whether – on a preliminary view – other electoral areas outside of Dublin and Cork City should be considered for designation as rent pressure zones. They used data from the RTB and from commercial residential property letting websites for this first analysis. On the basis of this analysis, the Housing Agency recommended that a number of local electoral areas should be formally considered for designation by the RTB.

The Housing Agency submitted its list of areas for consideration earlier this week to Minister Coveney. The Minister then formally requested a rent zone report from the Director of the RTB.

Click Here for Maps of Designated Rent Pressure Zone.

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Invitation to Landlords, Tenants, Agents and Representatives!

Jan 26, 2017

Information Seminar on the Residential Tenancies Acts and the recent changes introduced into Law.

The Residential Tenancies Board is pleased to invite stakeholders including Landlords, Tenants, third parties agents and representatives to an information seminar on Landlord and Tenant Law and recent changes introduced by the Residential Tenancies (Amendment) Act 2016, including rent pressure zones. The seminar is aimed at housing practitioners working in the rental sector, property managers, landlord and tenant groups and representatives. The purpose of the seminar is to raise awareness and educate those involved and working in the rental sector of the rights and obligations of tenants and landlords and the new changes to the law.

Date: Thursday 9th February 2017

Time: 9.30am – 1.00pm

Location: The Gandon Suite North and Central, The O'Callaghan Davenport Hotel, 8-10 Merrion Street Lower, Dublin 2

Registration: Please register at https://www.eventbrite.ie/e/rtb-information-seminar-further-changes-to-policy-and-the-law-tickets-31411668145

We look forward to meeting you on the 9th February for what we are sure will be an interesting and interactive event!

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FURTHER CHANGES TO POLICY AND THE LAW

Jan 19, 2017

Changes to time period in appeals to a Tribunal

Since 17th January 2017 the time period to appeal to Tribunal has been reduced from 21 days to 10 working days

Changes to Probationary Period for a Further Part 4 Tenancy

The 2016 Act extends the Part 4 tenancy cycle from 4 years to 6 years. This applies to all new tenancies that commenced on or after 24 December 2016, including a Further Part 4 tenancy coming into existence on or after this date. A tenancy may be terminated within the first six months without giving a reason. Once a Part 4 tenancy comes into existence it can only be terminated by using one of the Section 34 grounds in the 2004 Act. In summary those grounds are:-

                        * There has been a failure to comply with obligations under the tenancy

                        * The dwelling is no longer suited to the needs of the occupying household

                        * The landlord intends to sell the dwelling within 3 months of the termination date

                        * The landlord requires the dwelling for own or family member occupation

                        * Vacant possession is required for substantial refurbishment of the dwelling

                        * The landlord intends to change the use of the dwelling

If a fixed term lease is in place, the termination of a Part 4 tenancy, which also has the benefit of a fixed term lease, can only occur where:-

                        * There has been a breach of obligations by either landlord or tenant;

                        * The landlord has refused a sublet or assignment request from the tenant;

                        * The fixed term lease provides for specific grounds for termination and those grounds   comply with the terms of the 2004 Act.

Terminating a Further Part 4 tenancy has changed since 17th January 2017. Where a landlord is seeking to terminate a Further Part 4 tenancy in the first six months (the probationary period), they will be required to rely upon one of the Section 34 grounds (the fixed term lease termination restrictions continue to apply).  Prior to this change a landlord could terminate a Further Part 4 in the first 6 months without providing a reason.

More Information regarding Notices of Termination can be found at  http://www.rtb.ie/dispute-resolution/dispute-resolution/sample-notices-of-termination

Notices of Termination and the ‘Tyrrelstown’ amendment

The ‘Tyrrelstown’ amendments commenced on 17th January 2017 and relates to a restriction on the sale of 10 or more units, the subject of tenancies, in a development. The content of the Notice of Termination has not changed but an amended statutory declaration is required under these circumstances. An individual statutory declaration will have to accompany each individual notice of termination.

The 2016 Act restricts the termination of certain tenancies and requires additional information to be inserted into the statutory declaration where an exemption to the Tyrrelstown amendment is being relied upon. This new law confirms that a Part 4 tenancy cannot be terminated on the grounds of an intention to sell where the landlord is seeking to sell 10 or more dwellings within a development during the relevant time. ‘Relevant time’ means any period of 6 months within the period beginning with:-

-          the offer for sale of the first dwelling, and

-          ending with the offer for sale in the development of the last dwelling.

The restriction on the selling of 10 of more units is subject to a market value exemption. The restriction does not apply where the landlord can show, to the satisfaction of the RTB, that the price to be obtained by selling the dwellings at market value is more than 20 per cent below the market value that could be obtained if sold with vacant possession, and, that applying this restriction would, having regard to all the circumstances, be unduly onerous on the landlord, or would cause undue hardship on the landlord.

It should be noted that a notice of termination on the grounds of an intention to sell, which was served before January 17th, will operate under the previous rules. It should also be noted that the provisions will apply to all tenancies, including those created before January 17th.

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USI launches National Student Housing Survey

Jan 13, 2017

The Union of Students in Ireland (USI) has launched a National Student Housing Survey, inviting responses from students across the Republic of Ireland. The survey seeks to assess the housing situation of students across the country and preferences of students regarding their accommodation.

The housing crisis in Ireland has had a negative impact on studying trends, academic performance and mental health of students. The escalating cost of rent across Ireland, due to shortages of supply and an increase in demand, is forcing some students to commit to leases they can’t afford, sleep on friends’ couches, live in poor quality accommodation or endure long commutes. The lack of purpose-built on-campus accommodation, private sector rent increases and the shortage of rental properties continues to fuel a dropout culture in third level education.

Speaking at the survey launch, USI President Annie Hoey said: ‘The accommodation crisis is deterring students, especially those from rural areas, from going to college, and long commutes are already negatively affecting the quality of their college experience.

‘We want to assess the actual situation of students across the country. Housing cannot be treated only as a market, but is central to the experience of the student, and whether or not they thrive at college. Investment in student accommodation is investment in reduced rates of wasteful non-completion and increased rates of study success.’ added Hoey.

The National Student Housing Survey focuses on five areas: demographics, accommodation status and conditions, satisfaction with current accommodation and past experiences of all students living and studying in Ireland. It is divided into 6 modules: current study situation, current housing situation, finding a place, satisfaction with your accommodation, accommodation conditions, past experiences. The survey will be open for three weeks and is available here. By submitting responses, students may enter the draw to win an iPad mini or one of five €50 One4All Multi-Store Gift Cards.

Please visit usi.ie or homes.usi.ie to find out about other activities of USI with regard to housing.

More info about the survey: http://usi.ie/studenthousing/. For media inquiries please contact campaigns@usi.ie or 01 709 9300.

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Changes to Policy and the Law

Dec 23, 2016

Measures Introduced in line with the Rental Strategy

The Minister introduced a number of changes affecting both landlords and tenants as part of a rental strategy launched 13th December 2016. These aim to address issues such as rent predictability, security of tenure, streamlining the dispute resolution services and enhancing the role and powers of the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB). The cornerstone of this Rental Strategy was to give rent predictability to both landlords and tenants in areas that rents have increased rapidly. The long term vision for the rental sector is to deliver long-term affordable and high quality accommodation solutions that meet the differing needs of a diverse range of tenants, providing a secure, predictable investment environment for landlords and accommodation providers.

Rent Predictability Measures

The Rent Predictability Measure is a new provision that is intended to moderate the rise in rents in the parts of the country where rents are highest and rising - where households have greatest difficulties in finding accommodation they can afford.  In these areas, called Rent Pressure Zones, rents will only be able to rise by a maximum of 4% annually.  The measure will be applied immediately to Dublin and Cork city. It covers the 4 Dublin local authorities (Dublin City Council, South Dublin County Council, Dun Laoghaire/Rathdown County Council and Fingal County Council) and Cork City Council.

If your home or property falls within one of these local authority areas it is covered by the measure. 

Why have Dublin and Cork City been designated as Rent Pressure Zones?For an area to be designated a Rent Pressure Zone, rents in the area must be at a high level and they must be rising quickly, the criteria are:

  • The annual rate of rent inflation in the area must have been 7% or more in four of the last six quarters,
  • The average rent for tenancies registered with the Residential Tenancies Board in the previous quarter must be above the average national rent in the quarter( the National Indicative Rent in the RTB’s Rent Index Report)

The measure has been implemented immediately in Dublin and Cork City because they meet the above criteria for a Rent Pressure Zone.

Who decides what areas are Rent Pressure Zones? 
Rents are closely monitored and the Housing Agency, following consultation with the Local Authority concerned, may propose an area to the Minister for consideration. The Minister will ask the Residential Tenancies Board, which collects and monitors the data on rents, to assess whether the criteria apply to the area. If they do, the RTB will confirm that to the Minister and the Minister will make the relevant order.

Are all rental properties covered?
No, there are certain exceptions. Properties that are new to the rental market – i.e. properties that have not been let at any time in the previous two years – and properties which have been substantially refurbished can be exempted from the measure. However the existing requirement that the rent set for a property must be in line with local market rents for similar properties in the area still applies.

A ‘substantial refurbishment’ must be a significant change to the dwelling resulting in increased market value of the tenancy. Therefore this would involve significant alterations or improvements which add to the letting value of the property - usually involving major building works or works requiring planning permission. For example, simple repainting or replacement of white goods would not be sufficient.

If I want to raise the rent on my dwelling in a Rent Pressure Zone, what do I need to do?
Where a landlord is setting the rent in a Rent Pressure Zone the amount can not be greater than the amount determined by the below formula, the existing requirement that the rent set is not above the local market rents for similar properties still applies and three examples of rents for similar properties in the locality must be presented to demonstrate this.

R x (1 + 0.04 x t/m)
*please note that you should do your calculations working from right to left 

R = The amount of rent last set under a tenancy for the dwelling (the current rent amount)
=  The number of months between the date the current rent came in to effect and the date the new rent amount will come in to effect.
m = you must enter 24 OR 12

Landlord has not reviewed the rent in previous 24 months:
For tenancies that are already in existence a review is only permitted 24 months after the tenancy came in to existence or 24 months from the date the rent was last set. In this instance m = 24.
For this initial rent review after the 24 month period as specified above a maximum rent increase of 4% will apply.  (This amounts to 2% per annum applied pro-rata for the period since the rent was last increased).

Following on from this initial review after 24 months, a landlord is now entitled to review the rent every 12 months.

New tenancies from 24th December 2016
Landlords of all new tenancies within a Rent Pressure Zone commencing on or after 24th December 2016 are entitled to review the rent annually. In this instance m = 12.

If rent reviews take place annually the permissible rent increase in each case will be 4%. If, for example, a landlord opts to review the rent after 18 months (instead of one year) the allowable increase will be 6% (4 % per annum pro-rata for 1 ½ years).

 

More Information regarding Rent Predictability Measures can be found here http://www.rtb.ie/dispute-resolution/dispute-resolution/rent-reviews

Additional Requirement for New Tenancies in Rent Pressure Zone

In the case of a new tenancy in a rent pressure zone, a landlord is required to  furnish the tenant, in writing, with the following information at the commencement of the tenancy:

(i) The amount of rent that was last set under a tenancy for the dwelling;
(ii)The date the rent was last set under a tenancy for the dwelling;
(iii) A statement as to how the rent set under the tenancy of the dwelling has been calculated having regard to the rent pressure zone formula.

Supply

It’s envisaged the new system will not negatively impact either existing or new supply. To encourage additional investment into the market, the Minister had excluded new units and units vacant for over 2 years that will be put back into the market.

Rent Certainty Measures

Rent certainty measures will continue to apply until the next rent review is due to be carried out. Thereafter if the area is not in one of the rent pressure zone then the rent certainty measures will continue to exist, namely that the landlord cannot increase the rent greater than the market rent having given 90 days notice of the rent increase having sought three comparable properties advertised within the previous four week period

Security of Tenure

Security for both landlords and tenants is essential if the rental sector is to be both an attractive option for tenants and a safe and viable investment choice for investors. The rental strategy aims to move towards a situation where longer term tenancies are the norm. The legislation extends tenancies from 4 years to 6 year tenancies. This will apply to all new tenancies that come into operation after 24th December 2016 which includes a further Part 4 tenancy that come into existence after 24th December 2016. Landlords currently can terminate within the first six months of a tenancy without giving a reason.  Once a Part 4 tenancy comes into existence it can only be terminated by using one of the grounds listed below.

If a landlord wishes to stop a Further Part 4 tenancy coming into existence they may serve a notice during the Part 4 tenancy with the notice period given to the tenant expiring on or after the end of the tenancy.  A notice served in this way should provide a reason for termination but the reason does not need to be one of the grounds set out below.  To ensure the notice is valid it is best practice for the notice period given to end during the first six months of the Further Part 4 tenancy.

If a landlord wishes to terminate during the first six months of the Further Part 4 tenancy they may serve a notice during the first six months without providing a reason or needing to rely on one of the grounds below.  This method of termination will change soon and updates will be provided on our website.

  1. The tenant has failed to comply with the obligations of the tenancy (having first been notified, in writing, of the failure, and given an opportunity to remedy it.)
  2. The landlord intends to sell the dwelling within the next 3 months
  3. The dwelling is no longer suited to the needs of the occupying household
  4. The landlord requires the dwelling for own or family member occupation
  5. Vacant possession is required for substantial refurbishment of the dwelling
  6. The landlord intends to change the use of the dwelling

More Information regarding Notices of Termination can be found http://www.rtb.ie/dispute-resolution/dispute-resolution/sample-notices-of-termination

Example
Tenant is residing in the tenancy for duration of 4 years on 1 January 2017. From this date it currently is considered a new tenancy and called a further Part 4 tenancy. As this is a new tenancy, after the 6 months probationary timeline in which a landlord can terminate the tenancy without giving reason, the tenant becomes entitled to remain in that tenancy for a total of 6 years unless a landlord wishes to terminate the tenancy for the above listed grounds.

Publication of Dispute Timelines

The Board will now be required by law to publish statistics, including average dispute resolution timelines on a quarterly basis

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Strategy for the Rental Sector launched today 13th Dec 2016 by Minister Simon Coveney

Dec 13, 2016

Mr. Simon Coveney T.D., Minister for Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government and Mr. Damien English T.D., Minister of State for responsibility for Housing and Urban Renewal today launched the ‘Strategy for the Rental Sector’. Please find below links for the strategy document and the accompanying press release:

 1. Strategy for the Rental Sector Press Release 

 2. Strategy for the Rental Sector booklet

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New amendments to Legislation effective from 9th May 2016

Dec 13, 2016

1.      Additional proofs required by Landlord in certain instances to terminate tenancy 

Amendments have been made to Sections 34 and 35 (reasons to terminate a part 4 tenancy) of the 2004 Act, as detailed below:

(i)      Accommodation needs reason – a written statement must accompany the Notice of Termination specifying the bed spaces in the dwelling and setting out grounds as to why the dwelling is no longer suitable having regard to the bed spaces and the size and composition of the occupying household.

(ii)    Intending to sell within 3 months of the termination of the tenancy – the three month period must be set out in the Notice and the Notice must be accompanied by a Statutory Declaration confirming this intention.  The Statutory Declaration must contain a declaration that the landlord intends to enter into an enforceable agreement to transfer to another, for full consideration, of the whole of his or her interest in the dwelling or the property containing the dwelling. 

(iii)   Dwelling intended for own or family use – the Notice must contain or be accompanied by a Statutory Declaration confirming the intended occupant’s identity and (if not the landlord) their relationship to the landlord and the expected duration of that occupation.  The statutory declaration must also confirm that the landlord is required to offer a tenancy to the tenant if the contact details under Section 35 of the Act are provided and the dwelling is vacated within a period of 6 months from the termination date. 

(iv)  Substantially refurbish or renovate reason – the notice must contain or be accompanied by a written statement specifying the nature of the intended works to be carried out and where planning permission is required a copy is to be provided. Where no planning permission is required the statement must set out the name of the contractor (if any), the dates on which the works are to be carried out and the proposed duration of those works.  The statement must also confirm that the landlord is required to offer a tenancy to the tenant if the contact details under Section 35 of the Act are provided and the dwelling becomes available within a period of 6 months from the termination date.

(v)    Change of Use reason – the notice must contain or be accompanied by a statement specifying the nature of the intended use and where planning permission is required to provide a copy of the permission. The statement must provide details of the works to be carried out, identify the contractor, if any, and the dates and expected duration of the works.

(vi)  Breach of Obligations reason – There is no change to this reason which provides that where one of the parties has failed to comply with their obligations, they must first be notified of the breach and given an opportunity to remedy it.

2.      Rent Reviews

The notice of new rent is required to comply with the form prescribed by the Minister.

  • It must state the amount of new rent and the date from which is to have effect.
  • It must include a statement that a dispute must be referred to the Board on the expiry of 28 days from the receipt by the tenant of that notice or the date the new rent takes effect.
  • It must include a statement by the landlord that it is their opinion that the new rent is not greater than market rent having regard to –
    • The other terms of the tenancy
    • Letting values of dwellings of a similar size, type and character and situated in a comparable area
    • It must specify the rent amount for three comparable dwellings of a similar size, type and character and situated in a comparable area
    • It must include the date on which the notice is signed
    • It must be signed by the landlord or his/her authorised agent

 

3.      Anti-Social Behaviour

A third party may refer a case to the RTB in relation to anti-social behaviour where they are or were directly and adversely affected by the landlords failure to enforce their tenants obligations in relation to anti –social behaviour.

The third party may request one of the following to communicate with the landlord or former landlord on their behalf or submit a case on their behalf:

  • An owners’ management company in a multi-unit development
  • A body corporate
  • A body of persons who have as one of their principle objectives the promotion of the safety and security of the dwellings and the persons residing in the vicinity of the dwelling containing the tenancy concerned, such as a residents association or a neighbourhood watch group

 

4.      Additional Requirements for Tenancy Registration Confirmation

The tenancy registration confirmation letter must now be in the prescribed form and must:

  • Acknowledge receipt of the application
  • Acknowledge receipt of the registration fee
  • Specify the Registered Tenancy (RT) number
Include information setting out
  • The rights and obligations of landlords and tenants including
  • The setting of the rent, a review of the rent and the notice of new rent
  • Security of tenure under Part 4
  • The termination of tenancies
  • Matters which may be referred to the board for dispute resolution including
    • Complaints in respect of the amount of rent initially set
    • Complaints in respect of the amount of rent determined on foot of a review
  • Redress that may be granted by the Board and specifying the amount of damages that an adjudicator or Tribunal may direct be paid to a party in respect of the matter
  • The function of the Board to disclose particulars of the registration to the Revenue Commissioners

Table containing all Legislative Changes to date


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Solicitors Panel for Enforcement of Determination Orders

Dec 06, 2016





The Residential Tenancies Board (RTB), formerly the Private Residential Tenancies Board (PRTB), was established in 2004.  Its remit is to regulate and support the rental housing market by;

-    Operating a national system of tenancy registration

-    Providing a quasi – judicial Dispute Resolution Service for tenants and landlords

-   Conducting Research and providing advice to the Minister in relation to matters impacting on the sector. This includes producing a quarterly rent index based on one of the most extensive rental databases in the country

Our remit has also recently been extended to Approved Housing Bodies, which are not-for-profit housing providers or housing associations and provide housing for about 30,000 tenants. This change (and hence the name change) means that both tenants and landlords of these properties enjoy certain provisions of the Residential Tenancies Acts, including access to the disputes resolution services we operate.

The Residential Tenancies Act 2004(as amended) provides a statutory dispute resolution process for the resolution of disputes between landlords, tenants, and certain third parties, by way of independent mediation or adjudication facilitated by the Board. There is a facility to refer the matter (in the case of mediation) or appeal, in the case of adjudication to a Tenancy Tribunal established by the Board. Following the conclusion of this process the Board makes a legally binding Determination Order.  The Act provides that a party or the Board may take legal proceedings to enforce the determination order if not complied with. The Board takes very seriously the issue of non-compliance with its orders and while not obliged to take enforcement, has done so in over 1200 cases in the last 3 years.     In agreeing to cover the cost of enforcement the Board has regard to its published Policy and criteria on enforcement. Once the Board agrees to an enforcement request the case is then submitted to its Solicitors for enforcement proceedings.  

The Board is now seeking to establish a panel of solicitors around the Country willing to provide legal representation to parties where the Board has sanctioned enforcement on their behalf. The Panel is expected to be in existence for a period of 3 years. Currently enforcement is through the Circuit Court however, an amendment to the Act provides for enforcement to be taken in the District Court. This amendment is expected to be commenced by the end of the year. Consequently, it is expected that panel members will be enforcing orders in the District Court and experience of advocating in the District court is required. Copies of the application form and the terms and conditions of the Panel are available on the Board’s website (www.rtb.ie).

The terms and conditions include the fee structure that is being put in place by the Board. The Board wishes to have a limited number of solicitors on the Panel and selection for the Panel will be based on the applications received. The Board also reserves the right to interview solicitors for the Panel. Solicitors selected for the panel will be expected to comply with the Board’s Best Practice Guidelines copy of which is available with the application form.   The Board will provide training in respect of enforcement and Solicitors must participate in training provided by the Board before they can be placed on the Panel.

The Board would be pleased to receive applications from solicitors with a real commitment to the work and  experience  in advocacy before the District Court. Experience in providing legal services to residential landlords and tenants is desirable but not necessary.

To apply submit a completed application in the format provided by e-mail (typed applications only) to enforceorder@rtb.ie. Solicitors should note a training event has been provisionally arranged for early March 2017 in Dublin and should submit their application by 31st January 2017.  
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Latest Data from RTB Quarterly Rent Index

Dec 01, 2016

•    PRIVATE RENTS CONTINUED TO RISE IN THIRD QUARTER OF 2016 BUT RATE OF GROWTH HAS SLOWED

•    DUBLIN RENTS NOW 5% HIGHER THAN PREVIOUS PEAK IN 2007, WHILE RENTS NATIONALLY ARE 4% BELOW PEAK

—    LATEST DATA FROM RTB QUARTERLY RENT INDEX


The latest Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) rent index – for the third quarter (July to September) of this year – shows that while private sector rents continue to rise, the rate of growth slowed in that quarter, compared with quarter two, and that the annualised rate of growth has also begun to slow.  The rent index also reflects the first decline in quarterly Dublin house rents since Q1 2013, and rents outside Dublin are now rising at a faster pace than in the capital.

The data comes from the RTB’s Quarterly Rent Index which is compiled by the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) for the RTB. It is the most accurate and authoritative rent report of its kind on the private accommodation sector in Ireland. This is because it is based on 30,260 new tenancies which commenced in Q3 this year, and which were registered with the RTB. It reflects the actual rents being paid, according to the RTB’s records, as distinct from the asking or advertised rent.

Nationally, monthly rents grew by 2.3%, marginally slower than Q2, when they increased by 3.5%. Overall, the data show that rents for houses are increasing at a slightly faster rate than rents for apartments, at 2.6% compared to 1.8%. In Dublin, the pace of growth has slowed somewhat compared to Q2, with rents increasing by 0.6%.  The slowdown appears to be driven by a marginal fall in Dublin house rents of 0.6%, while rents for Dublin apartments increased by 1.5% over the same period.  This is the first decline in quarterly Dublin house rents since Q1 2013.
Interestingly, the pace of growth outside Dublin picked up in Q3, with overall rents outside Dublin increased by 3.6%. This consisted of a 3.6% increase in house rents while the comparable increase in apartments was broadly similar at 3.4%.
On an annual basis, rents nationally were 8.6% higher than in Q3, 2015; up from €897 to €973. Nationally, rents for houses were 7.4% higher annually in Q3 of this year (up from €900 to €967), while apartment rents were 9.9% higher than in the same quarter of 2015 (up from €925 to €1,017.

Annual growth in the Dublin market was 7.1% (up from €1,285 to €1,375) between Q3 2015 and Q3 2016.  Dublin house rents were up by 3.3% (€1,431 to €1,478) and Dublin apartment rents were higher by 9.6% (€1,275 to €1,397). Annual growth in rents for the market outside Dublin recorded increases of 9.7% when compared to Q3, 2015; up from €705 to €773. Again the performance differed by property type. Monthly rent for houses outside Dublin increased by 8.8% (from €735 to €800), while apartments outside Dublin experienced an increase of 11.1% (€666 up to €740).
While the longer-term trends indicate that annual growth has continued, the pace of growth has begun to slow. Following the financial downturn of 2007/08, annual growth in rents nationally registered their largest decline in Q4, 2009, at -14.9%. In the interim they have increased by approximately 23% from that low point to Q3, 2016, and they are now just 4% below the peak levels of Q4, 2007.

While the post-2009 rate of growth in Dublin outpaced the rest of the country, the pace of growth in the capital has moderated somewhat and, although rents in Dublin were 5% higher in Q3 than at their previous peak in Q4, 2007, this quarter’s growth rate slowed to 0.6% compared to Q2.

Up to Q3 last year, the pace of growth in rents outside Dublin was slower than in the capital. However, the speed of growth in annual rents outside Dublin has overtaken that of Dublin in the past year, and continues to rise at a faster pace. This now means that the difference between rents outside Dublin and rents in Dublin has fallen from a gap of 15.5%, at the peak of the difference in Q3 2015, to 7.3% in Q3 this year. The faster growth in rents outside of Dublin reflects similar trends in house prices, where regional prices have exhibited stronger growth than those in the capital since Q2 last year.

At a national level, annual growth was 8.6% in Q3 and has averaged 9.2% so far this year. This is particularly strong when compared to this time last year where average growth was 6.6% for the same period. Houses and apartments in Dublin have been growing at a similar pace over the last year; however this trend changed marginally in Q3, with a slowdown in annual rent growth for Dublin houses to 3.3%, compared to 6.8% in Q2.

Commenting on the latest Rent Index findings, the Director of the RTB, Ms. Rosalind Carroll, said: “While the rate of growth in private sector rents appears to be moderating, it is prudent not to read too much into the results for any single quarter.   The market is still volatile and therefore it is difficult to identify patterns.”
“In Q2, rents in Dublin went up by 4.4%, whereas this quarter we have seen much reduced growth of just 0.6% But taking the Q3 2016 data, based as it is on actual rents being paid, as opposed to asking rents, it does appear that the rate of growth has slowed, and in particular that the rate of rental growth in Dublin appears to have slowed. What is also significant is that the rents outside of Dublin are now rising more rapidly than Dublin rents. Annually rents outside of Dublin grew by 9.7% compared to 7.1% in the Dublin market. It should be noted though that while rents outside of Dublin are accelerating, they are still 7.3% behind the peak levels of 2007”.
Ms Carroll said the RTB now has a total of 324,222 tenancies registered, representing 174,158 landlords and 705,183 occupants.  

The RTB website www.rtb.ie (click on “rent index”) also contains an Average Rent Dataset which enables people to check the average rent being paid for five different categories of dwelling types throughout the country, in both urban and rural areas. This means people can check what is the actual rent being paid for, say, a semi-detached house or a two-bed apartment in their neighbourhood, or in other parts of the country.
All landlords are legally obliged to register tenancies with the RTB and the number of new registrations with the RTB in Q3, 2016, was 30,260.

The RTB Index is of assistance for a range of Government purposes, including housing policy generally, and informing the Department of Social Protection’s Rent Supplement scheme. It is also an important reference document in landlord/tenant disputes on rent.  
 


About the RTB and the Private Rented Residential Market
The Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) was established in 2004 to operate a national tenancy registration system and to resolve disputes between landlords and tenants. It also provides policy advice to the Government on the rented sector, and its dispute resolution service replaces the courts for the majority of landlord and tenant disputes.   According to the 2011 Census, nearly 1 in 5 households in the country were renting their accommodation in the sector.  
Formerly known as the Private Residential Tenancies Board (PRTB), its name was  changed to the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) in April this year. This is to reflect its broadened remit in the rental sector, with the addition of Approved Housing Bodies to its remit.   Approved Housing Bodies are not-for-profit housing providers, often referred to as housing associations, that provide accommodation for those in need. This change ensures that tenants and landlords of these properties are afforded protection under the Residential Tenancies Acts and will be able to access the disputes resolution services of the RTB.   There are over 30,000 tenancies in the Approved Housing Body Sector in Ireland.


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Two landlords ordered to pay €17,300 in Court fines and legal costs for failing to register tenancies

Nov 30, 2016

Residential Tenancies Board secured convictions against landlords

Wednesday 30th November 2016: The Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) has secured convictions against two landlords who have previously been convicted for failing to register their tenancies and have now been ordered to pay a total of €17,300 in Court fines and legal costs.

Frank Chatham of 4 Arch Villas, Greystones, County Wicklow was convicted on four counts for failing to register four tenancies.  Dereck Doherty of 12 Grangemore Court, Donaghmede, Dublin 13 was convicted on one count for failing to register a tenancy in Church Road.

While Mr Chatham did not attend Court, Mr. Justice Brennan was satisfied that Mr Chatham was on notice of the Court case. Mr. Justice Brennan also noted that the RTB had gone to great lengths to afford Mr Chatham every opportunity to engage with them and register the tenancies.

Judge Brennan convicted Mr Chatham of an offence under Section 144(3) of the Residential Tenancies Act 2004 and imposed a fine of €500 in each separate case  for failure to register two tenancies in Dorset Street and one tenancy in Swords. The tenancies were not registered at the time of the court hearing. An additional fine of €300 was imposed for failure to register a tenancy in North Circular Road, this tenancy had been registered prior to the hearing which resulted in a lesser fine. Judge Brennan further made an Order for costs against Mr Chatham in favour of the RTB in the amount of €2,500 plus VAT in each separate case. 

Mr. Justice Brennan also convicted Dereck Doherty for failure to register a tenancy in Church Road. Justice Brennan having reviewed the papers and hearing evidence from a representative of the RTB was satisfied that Mr Doherty was guilty of an offence under Section 144(3) of the Residential Tenancies Act 2004 and imposed a fine of €3,000 for failure to register the tenancy. Costs were also awarded in favour of the RTB  in the amount of €2,500 plus VAT.

The rental housing sector provides homes to one in five households in Ireland. This includes over 100,000 households who are supported by State supported schemes such as Rent Supplement, Housing Assistance Programme or the Rental Accommodation Scheme

“Regulation in the rental housing sector is of upmost importance and registration is the first step in that process.  The Residential Tenancies Act has been in place for over 12 years now and it is just not acceptable that a minority of Landlords attempt to operate outside the law, despite several official communications setting out clearly what their obligations are and what the consequences for not registering may be.

It is particularly disappointing that landlords who were previously convicted for failing to register tenancies would again come to our attention.  The RTB provides every opportunity to landlords to engage so that they do not end up with a conviction and having to pay substantial fines and legal costs.  Since 2013 the RTB has secured 69 criminal convictions against landlords who fail to register their tenancies despite every opportunity been afforded to them”, commented  RTB Assistant Director, Ms Kathryn Ward.

The RTB maintain a published register of all registered tenancies and this register is a very important part of regulation of the sector. The register is provided to Revenue for the purpose of facilitating tax compliance in rental income and the Department of Social Protection for fraud detection.

The published register of all registered tenancies is available on the registration homepage of the RTB website www.rtb.ie and any tenancy suspected of being unregistered can be reported by any member of the public to the RTB which will take steps to investigate the matter.

 

 

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Latest Data From RTB Quarterly Rent Index

Sep 15, 2016

  • PRIVATE RENTS ROSE NEARLY 10% ACROSS COUNTRY IN SECOND QUARTER 0F 2016 COMPARED WITH SAME PERIOD IN 2015

  • DUBLIN RENTS NOW 3.9% HIGHER THAN PREVIOUS PEAK IN 2007

  • PROPERTIES WITH WEEKLY RENT OF OVER €300 UP FROM 7% IN 2013 TO 25% NOW




The latest Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) rent index shows that, nationally, rents rose by just under 10% in the second quarter (Q2) of this year, when compared with a year earlier. The index also shows that significant increases were not confined to the Dublin region, but also occurred in other parts of the country. And in Dublin, rents are now at a new peak level, 3.9% higher than the previous peak which occurred in Q4, 2007. While rents are increasing outside of Dublin, rents remain 11.2% off their peak levels.

This data comes from the RTB’s Quarterly Rent Index which is compiled by the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) on behalf of the RTB. It is the most accurate and authoritative rent report of its kind on the private accommodation sector in Ireland. This is because it is based on 22,103 new tenancies which commenced in April, May and June this year, and which were registered with the RTB. It reflects the actual rents being paid, according to the RTB’s records, as distinct from the asking or advertised rent.

On an annual basis, nationally, rents were 9.9% higher than in Q2, 2015; up from €869 to €956. Nationally, rents for houses were 9.3% higher annually in Q2 (up from €850 to €929), while apartment rents were 11.7% higher than in the same quarter of 2015 (up from €908 to €1,014.

Annual growth in the Dublin market was also strong, up by 9% (from €1,251 to €1,364). Dublin house rents were up by 7.5% (€1,388 to €1,492) and Dublin apartment rents were higher by 9.8% (€1,246 to €1,368). Annual growth in rents for the market outside Dublin recorded increases of 10.6% when compared to Q2, 2015; up from €669 to €740. Again the performance differed by property type. Monthly rent for houses outside Dublin increased by 9.9% (from €688 to €756), while apartments outside Dublin experienced an increase of 12.7% (€647 up to €729).

Turning to the quarter on quarter picture that emerges from the Index, at a national level monthly rent levels rose in Q2, 2016 by 3.6% when compared to Q1 of this year. This compared to a growth rate of just 0.2% in Q1, 2016. Looking at trends in more detail, at a national level, monthly rents for houses and apartments showed a similar rate of growth, with growth rates of 3.6% and 3.5% respectively, when compared with Q1 this year.

Rents in Dublin grew by 4.5% when compared with no growth in Q1 this year. While rents for houses in Dublin increased by 3.1%, rents for Dublin apartments rose by 5.4% quarter on quarter.

The rent indices for properties outside Dublin show rents in Q2, 2016, when compared with Q1, were up by 2.9%. Rents for houses outside Dublin recorded a quarterly increase of 3.8%. The index for apartment rents outside Dublin increased by 3.6% in the second quarter of 2016.

The Rent Index shows that, nationally rents peaked in Q4, 2007, before declining by 25.4% to their trough in Q1, 2012. By Q2, 2016 rents nationally were 5.7% lower than their peak. While the peak-to-trough in the Dublin market was similar to that experienced nationally, the strength of the rent rises in Dublin means they are now 3.9% higher than their previous peak in Q4, 2007. In contrast, the market outside Dublin has experienced more subdued growth, with rental levels now 11.2% their peak levels.

Commenting on the latest Rent Index findings, the Director of the RTB, Ms. Rosalind Carroll, said: “While the previous two quarters have shown a slowdown in the rate of increase in rents, the Q2 2016 results show the rate of growth in rents increasing again, particularly in the Dublin market. Adding to the underlying supply and demand imbalance is the return of net inward migration as confirmed by the Central Statistics Office last month (+3,100) for the first time since 2009”.

Ms Carroll said the RTB now has a total of 323,271 tenancies registered, representing 172,121 landlords and 704,332 occupants.

The trend in new tenancy registrations also reflects the supply shortage. Annual tenancy registrations peaked in 2013, with nearly 112,000 tenancies registered in that year, but that has dipped consecutively in 2014 and 2015, while our overall numbers of registered tenancies have increased. This suggests that tenants are staying longer in their properties”.

The RTB rent index is being expanded to provide additional information on the rental sector and for the first time also provides details on the types of properties being rented.

Data from the RTB Rent Index confirms that Dublin remains the largest rental market, with Dublin post codes accounting for close to one third of properties on the market, while other urban centres (Cork, Limerick, Waterford and Galway) account for 14% of rental properties.

Two-bed and three-bed properties are the most common property size, accounting for 69% of properties rented in Q2, 2016. Properties with a rent of over €300 per week account for 25% of properties rented in Q2, 2016, the same as Q4, 2007, the previous market peak. In contrast, at the beginning of 2013, properties with a weekly rent of greater than €300 euro represented just 7%.

The RTB website www.rtb.ie (click on “rent index”) also contains an Average Rent Dataset which enables people to check the average rent being paid for five different categories of dwelling types throughout the country, in both urban and rural areas. This means people can check what is the actual rent being paid for, say, a semi-detached house or a two-bed apartment in their neighbourhood, or in other parts of the country.

All landlords are legally obliged to register tenancies with the RTB and the number of new registrations with the RTB in Q2, 2016, was 22,103.

The RTB Index is of assistance for a range of Government purposes, including housing policy generally, and informing the Department of Social Protection’s Rent Supplement scheme. It is also an important reference document in landlord/tenant disputes on rent. 


About the RTB and the Private Rented Residential Market

The Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) was established in 2004 to operate a national tenancy registration system and to resolve disputes between landlords and tenants. It also provides policy advice to the Government on the rented sector, and its dispute resolution service replaces the courts for the majority of landlord and tenant disputes.   According to the 2011 Census, nearly 1 in 5 households in the country were renting their accommodation in the sector.  

Formerly known as the Private Residential Tenancies Board (PRTB), its name was changed to the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) in April this year. This is to reflect its broadened remit in the rental sector, with the addition of Approved Housing Bodies to its remit.   Approved Housing Bodies are not-for-profit housing providers, often referred to as housing associations, that provide accommodation for those in need. This change ensures that tenants and landlords of these properties are afforded protection under the Residential Tenancies Acts and will be able to access the disputes resolution services of the RTB.   There are over 30,000 tenancies in the Approved Housing Body Sector in Ireland.

 

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USI and RTB launch the Finance and Accommodation Guide to prep new Students for College

Aug 30, 2016

The Union of Students in Ireland (USI) and the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) will be launching the 2016 Finance and Accommodation guide in Maynooth University Students’ Union on Tuesday the 30th August at 9:15am in preparation for students coming to college. The guide details the rights and obligations students have while renting in accommodation and includes tips and advice for students who may be renting for the first time. It also informs students on the new tenancies regulations set by the Residential Tenancy Act 2015.

The guide has a rent book and inventory checklist included, so students can record any damages or missing utensils at the start of the lease, and not be penalised unfairly on their deposit. The guide also provides information on finance and gives budgeting tips for students to financially manage the college year. 

“USI is delighted to be launching the 2016 Finance and Accommodation guide with the RTB.” Annie Hoey, USI President, said. “It will really help students, especially those moving away from home for the first time, with tips on finding accommodation, what to do once you’ve found the accommodation, and what to do to organise yourself before starting college.”

USI is urging students to do their best to sort out accommodation in advance and move in a couple of days before starting college so that they are familiar with the area and local surroundings including bus routes, local facilities, supermarkets, etc.

“The Residential Tenancies Board publishes the most accurate nationwide rent report of its kind on the private accommodation sector, because it’s based on actual rents received, not rent sought.” Dillon Grace, Maynooth Students’ Union President, said. “The Finance and Accommodation guide will inform students on everything they need to know in these areas, from legal rights to practical tips.”

Speaking at the launch, Ms. Rosalind Carroll, Director of the RTB, said - “This is a valuable guide for all students, especially first-years. It is important that students renting accommodation are aware of their rights and responsibilities, and that they are aware of and use the services of the Residential Tenancies Board if a dispute arises. The guide provides lots of helpful information on finding rented accommodation, viewing and moving in to properties, and ending tenancies.  All tenants and prospective tenants are also urged to go to our website, www.rtb.ie which provides extensive information for both tenants and landlords, including information on our disputes resolution service. For further information, call the RTB on 0818 30 30 37”.

Once students find somewhere they like, USI is advising them to ring it to arrange a viewing as soon as they can. The union is also advising students not to hand over money until they receive the keys and the tenancy begins, if at all possible. USI is also urging students to transfer money electronically as it is traceable, or if they have to pay by cash to make sure they always get a receipt. USI said there is a lot of useful accommodation hunting websites online such as Daft.ie for renting, or homes.usi.ie for digs.

“We are encouraging students to ‘like’ their Students’ Union and College page on Facebook and Twitter for information on upcoming events, entertainments and promotions.” USI President, Annie Hoey, said. “We are also advising students to get the phone numbers for a few taxi companies, the college switchboard, college health and medical centre, chaplain, local emergency services and Students’ Union officers.”

Please find attached the full guide.
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LATEST DATA FROM RTB QUARTERLY RENT INDEX

Jun 09, 2016

  • RENT INDEX SHOWS EVIDENCE THAT RATE OF GROWTH IN PRIVATE SECTOR RENTS IS SLOWING

  • NATIONALLY, PRIVATE SECTOR RENTS GREW BY 8.6% IN YEAR TO MARCH 2016


The latest rent index shows that rents continued to increase in Q1, 2016, when compared with Q 4, 2015, although the rate of growth slowed in most sectors in the first quarter. At a national level, monthly rent levels rose in Q1, 2016, up by 0.5%, when compared with Q4, 2015. This compared to a growth rate of 1.6% in Q4, 2015. Monthly rents for houses were marginally lower, by 0.3%, while rents for apartments were 1.8% higher than in Q4, 2015.

Rents in Dublin grew by 0.2% in Q1, 2016 when compared with Q4, 2015. While rents for houses in Dublin increased by 0.6%, rents for Dublin apartments rose by 0.4%. For properties outside Dublin rents in Q1, 2016, when compared with Q4, 2015 were up by 0.9%. Rents for houses outside Dublin recorded a quarterly decline of 0.5%, while apartment rents outside Dublin increased by 4.2%.

This data comes from the latest Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) Quarterly Rent Index which is compiled by the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) for the Board. It is the most accurate and authoritative rent report of its kind on the private accommodation sector in Ireland. This is because it is based on 22,753 new tenancies which commenced in January, February and March this year, and on the actual rents being paid, according to the RTB’s records, as distinct from the asking or advertised rent.

Moving from the quarter-on-quarter picture to the level of annualised rent changes, rents for the country as a whole were 8.6% higher in the first three months of this year, compared with the first quarter (Q1) of 2015. Rents for houses were 7.8% higher, while apartment rents were 9.8% higher than in Q1, 2015. Annual growth in the Dublin market was also strong, up by 8.7% overall, with Dublin house rents up 8.4% and Dublin apartment rents up 8.1% between Q1 2015 and Q1, 2016.

Annual growth in rents for the market outside Dublin showed broadly similar annual increases, recording growth of 8.8% when compared to Q1, 2015. The performance differed by property type, with monthly rent for houses outside Dublin increasing by 7.6%, while apartments outside Dublin experienced an increase of 11.3%.

In monetary terms, the standardised rent for private sector accommodation across the whole country in Q1, 2016, was €922 – up from €849 in Q1, 2015. The rent for apartments nationally was €972 (compared to €885 a year earlier), and for a house it was €900 (€835 a year earlier). In Dublin, the rent in Q1, 2016, was €1,454 for a house and €1,306 for an apartment. A year earlier, Q1, 2015, the rent for a house in Dublin was €1,342, and for an apartment it was €1,208. Outside Dublin, the standardised rent in Q1, 2016, was €718, with houses averaging €731 and apartments €711. A year earlier, these figures stood at €660, €679 and €639 respectively.

The Rent Index shows that, nationally, rents peaked in Q4, 2007 before declining by 25.7% to their trough in Q1, 2012. By Q1, 2016 rents nationally were 9% lower than their peak. While the peak-to-trough in the Dublin market was similar to that experienced nationally, the strength of the recovery in Dublin means that rents are now 0.2% higher than their previous peak in Q4, 2007. In contrast, the market outside Dublin has experienced more subdued growth and rental levels are now 13.9% off their peak levels.

Commenting on the latest Rent Index findings, the Director of the RTB, Ms. Rosalind Carroll, said, “The trend in recent indices has been upwards, and that growth continued in Q1, 2016 with rents nationally now €73 a month higher than the same period in 2015. However, it appears that the rate of growth is slowing, with rents increasing by 0.5% between Q4, 2015 and Q1, 2016, compared to 1.6% for the previous quarter. While it is too early to make any real deductions from this, this is the second quarter in succession that we have seen growth slow”.

Ms Carroll said the RTB now has a total of 324,000 tenancies registered, representing 172,000 landlords and 705,000 occupants. “The ongoing increases in the level of rents across the country are being driven primarily by a lack of supply. The trend in new tenancy registrations also reflects this. Annual tenancy registrations peaked in 2013, with nearly 112,000 tenancies registered in that year, but that has dipped consecutively in 2014 and 2015, while our overall numbers of registered tenancies have increased. This suggests that tenants are staying longer in their properties”.

The RTB website www.rtb.ie (click on “rent index”) also contains an Average Rent Dataset which enables people to check the average rent being paid for five different categories of dwelling types throughout the country, in both urban and rural areas. This means people can check what is the actual rent being paid for, say, a semi-detached house or a two-bed apartment in their neighbourhood, or in other parts of the country.

All landlords are legally obliged to register tenancies with the RTB and the number of new registrations with the RTB in Q1, 2016, was 22,753.

The RTB Index is of assistance for a range of Government purposes, including housing policy generally, and informing the Department of Social Protection’s Rent Supplement scheme. It is also an important reference document in landlord/tenant disputes on rent.  It was developed in consultation and co-operation with landlord representative groups such as the Irish Property Owners Association, irishlandlord.com, the Institute of Professional Auctioneers and Valuers, the Society of Chartered Surveyors of Ireland, and tenant representative groups such as Threshold and USI (Union of Students in Ireland).

 


 

About the RTB and the Private Rented Residential Market

The Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) was established in 2004 to operate a national tenancy registration system and to resolve disputes between landlords and tenants. It also provides policy advice to the Government on the rented sector, and its dispute resolution service replaces the courts in relation to the majority of landlord and tenant disputes.   According to the 2011 Census, nearly 1 in 5 households in the country were renting their accommodation in the sector.  

Formerly known as the Private Residential Tenancies Board (PRTB), its name was changed to the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) from April 7th this year. This is to reflect our now broader remit in the rental sector, as Approved Housing Bodies are now also under our remit since April.   Approved Housing Bodies are not-for-profit housing providers, often referred to as housing associations, which provide accommodation for those in need. This change ensures that both tenants and landlords of these properties are afforded protection under the Residential Tenancies Acts and will be able to access the disputes resolution services of the RTB.   There are over 30,000 tenancies in the Approved Housing Body Sector in Ireland.


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Two Landlords Receive Criminal Convictions and €8,000 in fines and costs for Failing to Register their Tenancies with the Residential Tenancies Board

May 13, 2016

The Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) has secured criminal convictions against two Landlords who failed to register their tenancies, despite receiving a number of Statutory Notices and warning letters instructing them to do so. 

In the first case proceedings were taken against Eileen Maguire of Ballydevitt, Donegal Town, Donegal for failing to register a tenancy at Ballydevitt, Donegal. The case was heard by Judge John O’Neill on 4 April  2016. 

Counsel for the RTB informed the Court that the RTB sent two notices pursuant to Section 144 of the Residential Tenancies Act 2004 to Ms Maguire calling on her to comply with the legislation. As Ms Maguire failed to register the tenancy, Eversheds, the RTB’s Solicitors, sent two further warning letters prior to the institution of proceedings, thereby affording Ms Maguire further opportunities to register the tenancy, which was not availed of.

Judge John O’Neill convicted Ms Maguire of an offence under Section 144(3) of the Residential Tenancies Act 2004 and imposed a fine of €1,000.00. Judge O’Neill further made an Order for costs against Ms Maguire in favour of the RTB in the amount of €2,500 plus VAT. The tenancy was registered at the time of the court hearing.

In the second case Andrew Oliver Fleming of 103 Tymon Crescent, Old Bawn, Tallaght, Dublin 24 was convicted for failing to register a tenancy at 103 Tymon Crescent, Old Bawn, Tallaght, Dublin 24. Judge O’Neill imposed a fine of €1,000 and made an Order for costs in favour of the RTB in the amount of €2,500 plus VAT. The tenancy was registered at the time of the court hearing.

Judge O’ Neill remarked that in prosecuting cases the RTB are very “fair” and give Landlords “plenty of time to put their house in order”. 

The RTB continues to pursue Landlords for failing to register their tenancies, as required by the Residential Tenancies Act 2004. The RTB has confirmed that further cases will be brought before the Courts throughout 2016 and beyond against landlords for failing to register tenancies in breach of the Act. 22,854  letters were issued by the RTB in 2015 notifying Landlords of their specific registration requirement. Since 1 January 2011, the fee is €90.00 per tenancy if registered within one month of the tenancy commencing and,  a late fee of €180.00 applies if the tenancy is registered outside of that time period. The registration fees also fund Local Authority inspections of rental accommodation to enforce minimum standards.

In accordance with the Residential Tenancies Act 2004 the RTB is provided with information by local authorities and the Department of Social Protection as regards tenancies which are known to exist. Referrals are also received from other sources including Members of the Public, Elected Representatives and Members of an Garda Siochana.

The rental housing sector provides homes to one in five households in Ireland. This includes over 100,000 households who are supported by State supported schemes such as Rent Supplement, Housing Assistance Programme or the Rental Accommodation Scheme. It is important that the sector is well regulated and registration is the first step in that process.

The Residential Tenancies Act has been in place for over ten years now. It is not acceptable that a minority of Landlords attempt to operate outside the law, despite several official communications setting out clearly what their obligations are and what the consequences for not registering may be.

The RTB has engaged in joined up Government with other Public Sector bodies such as the Department of Social Protection and Local Authorities and uses sophisticated software to identify unregistered Landlords. In the past three years alone we have corresponded with over 85,000 Landlords (33,793 in 2013,29,256 in 2014 and 22,854 in 2015) notifying them of their requirement to register.   As with the landlords  most recently convicted we afford several opportunities to comply with the legislation and register. Where those opportunities are not availed of our policy is to pursue prosecutions. Since 2013 we have taken proceedings resulting in 49 criminal convictions.” said RTB Assistant Director Kathryn Ward.”

A landlord, if convicted under the Residential Tenancies Act 2004 for failing to comply with a notice, faces a fine of up to €4,000 and/or six months imprisonment, along with a daily fine of €250 for a continuing offence, i.e. where the tenancy continues to remain unregistered after the court hearing.

The Residential Tenancies Board (RTB), formerly the Private Residential Tenancies Board (PRTB), was established in 2004.  It currently has 324,000 tenancies registered representing, 172,000 landlords and 705,000 occupants. Its remit is to regulate and support the rental housing market. The remit has just recently been extended to include Approved Housing Bodies (hence the name change, which are not-for-profit housing providers or housing associations and provide housing for about 30,000 tenants. 

The RTB maintain a published register of all registered tenancies and this register is a very important part of regulation of the sector. The register is provided to Revenue for the purpose of facilitating tax compliance in rental income and the Department of Social Protection for fraud detection.

The published register of all registered tenancies is available on the registration homepage of the RTB website www.rtb.ie and any tenancy suspected of being unregistered can be reported by any member of the public to the PRTB which will take steps to investigate the matter.

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NEW AMENDMENTS TO THE LEGISLATION EFFECTIVE FROM 7TH APRIL 2016

Apr 08, 2016

Renaming of the Private Residential Tenancies Board
The role of the Private Residential Tenancies Board (PRTB) has being expanded from 7th April 2016. Approved Housing Bodies will be brought under its remit, meaning that tenants and landlords of Approved Housing Bodies often referred to housing associations  will also be able to access the dispute resolution services of the Board. Consequently the Private Residential Tenancies Board (PRTB)  is now called the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB).

Approved Housing Bodies

All Approved Housing Bodies tenants will have access to the dispute resolution services of the RTB, via mediation or adjudication, which were previously only available to private sector tenancies.

Approved Housing Bodies  (include Housing Associations and Co-operatives) provide and manage social rented housing. They are not for profit organisations formed for the purpose of relieving housing need.

Under Section 6 of the Housing (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act, 1992, bodies must obtain ‘approved status’ from the Department of Environment, Community and Local Government. A body seeking to obtain, and to retain, approved status must have the following -

  •  As a primary objective,  to relieve the housing need, or poverty or hardship or the welfare of Travellers, and the provision and management of housing,
  • In its memorandum of association or registered rules, provisions prohibiting the distribution of any surplus, profit, bonus or dividend to members and requiring that the assets of the body be applied solely towards its objects.

There are over  500 Approved Housing Bodies in Ireland with a stock size of over 30,000 units. Approved Housing Bodies provide housing in response to a range of different needs including families on low incomes, households with special needs, such as older persons, people with disabilities and homeless persons. They work in partnership with Local Authorities and take nominations from the Local Authority's social housing waiting list to fill available accommodation provided by the Approved Housing Bodies.

Requirement to Register

As and from 7th April 2016   Approved Housing Bodies will be required to register all their tenancies within 12 months of this date. Registrations can be done online at www.rtb.ie or alternatively by requesting a paper form from our customer call centre at 0818 30 30 37. The registrations will be at a reduced fee for this 12-month period only. Housing Associations will be charged €45 for each tenancy registration, for a period of 12 months only, beginning from today.  After the 12 month period normal fees (€90)  and penalties will apply for all registrations.

Dispute Resolution

If a tenant or landlord feel that their rights have been breached or the other party has not fulfilled their obligations they may lodge a dispute with the RTB. This can be done online at www.rtb.ie or by paper application requested by phone, 0818 30 30 37. The RTB has a useful good landlord / tenant guide that is available at the below links;

Good Landlord Guide

http://rtb.ie/landlords/rights-responsibilities-obligations/good-landlord-guide

Good Tenant Guide

http://rtb.ie/tenants/rights-responsibilities-obligations/good-tenant-guide

Differences in the Residential Tenancies Act for Approved Housing Bodies Tenancies

There are a number of small differences in the rights and obligations of AHB tenants and landlords.

The following differences apply for Approved Housing Bodies in comparison to private rented dwellings;

  1. Approved Housing Bodies  tenants are not permitted to assign or sublet the tenancy 
  2. Approved Housing Bodies carry out rent reviews in accordance with the tenancy agreement. Where there is no tenancy agreement, a rent review can be carried out once per year. The Approved Housing Bodies landlord is required to send a notice of rent review as soon as practicable.
  3. A tenant gains “Part IV tenant rights” when they are in a tenancy for longer than 6 months. This in essence means that once a tenant remains in the tenancy for over 6 months they gain an automatic security to remain in that tenancy for a minimum of 4 years. The tenancy can only be terminated on certain grounds under Section 34 of the Residential Tenancies Act 2004 including;

a. The tenant has failed to comply with their obligations
b. The landlord intends to sell the dwelling within the next 3 months
c. The dwelling is no longer suited to the needs of the occupying household
d. The landlord requires the dwelling for own or fmaily member occupation.
e. substantial refurbishment of the dwelling
f. change the use of the dwelling

Tenants living in accommodation which has been categorised as ‘transitional’ and where the tenancy is for no longer that 18 months will not gain the benefit of Part 4 rights therefore Section 34 grounds do not apply. The landlords right to terminate a Part IV tenancy for the reason that he or she requires the dwelling for own or family member occupation is not applicable to transitional dwellings.

     4. Article 8 of the minimum standards does not apply to Approved Housing Bodies.  The minimum standards regarding food preparation, storage and laundry purposes do not apply to Approved Housing Bodies. Therefore Approved Housing Bodies do not have to provide white goods such as washing machines etc.  All of the other regulations apply to Approved Housing Bodies.

 Dispute Process

Approved Housing Bodies Landlord and Tenants will be entitled to avail of the Dispute Resolution Service. The RTB operate a two stage dispute resolution process. The first stage consists of either mediation, if chosen by both parties, or adjudication. The PRTB are now offering a new free Mediation service and have recently introduced Telephone Mediation where a Mediator works separately with each party to reach a mutually acceptable resolution over a usually short period of time.  Parties can reach an agreement in the convenience of their own home. This confidential service has had a 93% success rate and because parties have come to their own agreement they tend to comply with the agreement.

The fee for Adjudication is €15 for online applications and €25 for paper applications.  Adjudication is where the parties submit their application and evidence to back up their claim. They will then attend the adjudication and present their case and evidence. Evidence can include Lease agreements, photographs, inventories carried out, invoices or receipts for damages to the property etc. An independent Adjudicator will make a decision based on the law, the facts and evidential basis of the claim.

Either party has a right to appeal their case to tribunal hearing. Approximately 12% of adjudication applications and 8% of mediation applications are appealed.  A Tribunal is a three person hearing on the matter similar to the adjudication. New measures have been introduced to shorten the timeline of the tribunal stage if either party requests on grounds of financial or other hardship. 

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Approved Housing Body Landlords & Tenants to Benefit from Legislative Protections

Apr 01, 2016

NEW DIRECTOR APPOINTED TO PRIVATE RESIDENTIAL TENANCIES BOARD

During April, the Private Residential Tenancies Board (PRTB) will change to the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB), bringing Approved Housing Bodies under its remit.

Approved Housing Bodies are not for profit housing providers, often referred to as housing associations, who provide accommodation for those in need. This new change will ensure that both tenants and landlords of these properties will be afforded protection under the Residential Tenancies Acts and will be able to access the disputes resolution services of the RTB.   

According to the 2011 Census, nearly 1 in 5 households in the country were renting their accommodation in the private sector, and that number is estimated to have increased since then.In addition, there over 30,000 tenants in the Approved Housing Body Sector.

Ms Rosalind Carroll has been appointed as the new Director of the PRTB. Ms. Carroll, was formerly Head of Regulation of Approved Housing Bodies at the Housing Agency, which was set up in 2010 by government to support local authorities; approved housing bodies, and the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government, in the delivery of housing and housing services.

Ms Carroll has considerable experience in the housing sector, having previously worked in the Department of Environment, Community and Local Government and Dublin City Council.

She holds a Master’s from the London School of Economics and has qualifications in Regulation. She takes up her new post on April 4th next, and the appointment is for a period of five years.

Ms Carroll succeeds Ms. Anne Marie Caulfield, who had served as Director since July 2008, and  recently decided to step down to take up a position at the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform.

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LATEST DATA FROM PRTB QUARTERLY RENT INDEX

Mar 15, 2016

 

 

  • RATE OF GROWTH IN PRIVATE SECTOR RENTS SLOWED IN FINAL QUARTER OF 2015
  • NATIONAL RENTS UP 2.2% IN Q4 2015, AND UP 9.8% IN THE YEAR.
  • DUBLIN RENTS NOW 0.4% HIGHER THAN 2007 PEAK & RENTS OUTSIDE DUBLIN NOW 14.5% OFF PEAK

LATEST DATA FROM PRTB QUARTERLY RENT INDEX



The rate of increase in private sector rents slowed in the final quarter of last year, with a slightly higher growth rate outside of Dublin than in the capital. However, rents in Dublin are now 0.4% higher than they were at their 2007 peak. Outside Dublin, rents are now 14.5% off their 2007 peak.


At a national level, monthly rent levels rose in Q4, 2015, by 2.2% when compared with Q3 when the growth rate was 3.6%. Looking at the trends in more detail, monthly rents countrywide for houses were up by 1.5% quarter on quarter, while rents for apartments were 2.7% higher than in Q3, 2015.


Rents in Dublin grew by 1.8% in Q4 compared with Q3, 2015. While rents for houses in Dublin increased by just 0.7%, rents for Dublin apartments rose by 1.9%. For properties outside Dublin, rents in Q4 2015, when compared with the third quarter of that year, were up 2.3%. Rents for houses outside Dublin recorded a quarterly increase of 1.9%, while apartment rents outside Dublin increased by 2.9% in Q4, 2015. 


This data comes from the latest Private Residential Tenancies Board (PRTB) Quarterly Rent Index which is compiled by the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) for the Board. It is the most accurate and authoritative rent report of its kind on the private accommodation sector in Ireland. This is because it is based on 27,316 new tenancies which commenced in October, November and December 2015, and on the actual rents being paid, according to the PRTB’s records, as distinct from the asking or advertised rent.


On an annual basis, nationally, rents were 9.8% higher in Q4, 2015 than in Q4, 2014. Nationally, rents for houses were 9.8% higher annually in Q4, while apartment rents were 10.7% higher than in Q4, 2014. Annual growth in the Dublin market was also strong, up by 9%, with Dublin house rents up 9.5% and Dublin apartment rents up 8.7%. Annual growth in rents for the market outside Dublin was similar, recording growth of 9.9% when compared to Q4, 2014. Again the performance differs by property type. Monthly rent for houses outside Dublin increased by 9.7%, while apartments outside Dublin increased by 10.5%. 


In monetary terms, the rent for private sector accommodation across the whole country in Q4, 2015, was €921 – up from €901 in Q3, 2015. The rent for apartments nationally was €977 (compared to €883 a year earlier), and for a house it was €892 (€813 a year earlier). In Dublin, the rent in Q4, 2015, was €1,431 for a house and €1,314 for an apartment. A year earlier, Q4, 2014, the rent for a house in Dublin was €1,307, and for an apartment it was €1,209. This represents a monthly increase in Dublin rent of €124 for a house and €105 for an apartment over the course of the 12 month period from Q4, 2014, to Q4, 2015. 


Outside Dublin, the rent in Q4, 2015, was €713, with houses averaging €728 and apartments €696. A year earlier, these figures stood at €649, €664 and €629 respectively. This represents a monthly increase in rent outside of Dublin of €64 for a house and €67 for an apartment in the 12 month period. 


The Rent Index shows that, nationally, rents peaked in Q4 of 2007 before declining by 25.7% to their trough in the first quarter of 2012. By Q4, 2015 rents nationally were 9.1% lower than their peak.  While the peak-to-trough in the Dublin market was similar to that experienced nationally, the strength of the recovery in Dublin means that rents are now 0.4% higher than their previous peak. In contrast, the market outside Dublin has experienced more subdued growth and so rental levels remain 14.5% off their peak levels. 


Commenting on the latest Rent Index findings, a Spokesperson for the PRTB said it was another opportunity too to remind both landlords and tenants of the provisions of the new tenancy legislation which came into law last December. “That provides that rent may only be increased once in a 24 month period (previously 12 months). It also provides that 90 days advance notice must be given prior to any increase (previously 28 days). As previously, rents may not be more than the market rate. 


“In the event of a dispute, landlords and tenants can take a case to the PRTB, which is now providing free mediation services (previously there was a €15 fee for online applications, and €25 for paper-based applications). This provision was introduced alongside the rent stability measures in December. A fee of €15 for online applications, and €25 for paper-based applications continues to apply for resolving disputes by adjudication.  A fee of €85 applies for online appeals, and €100 for paper-based appeal applications”. 


The PRTB website www.prtb.ie (click on “rent index”) also contains an Average Rent Dataset which enables people to check the average rent being paid for five different categories of dwelling types throughout the country, in both urban and rural areas. This means people can check what is the actual rent being paid for, say, a semi-detached house or a two-bed apartment in their neighbourhood,, or in other parts of the country. 


All landlords are legally obliged to register tenancies with the PRTB and the number of new registrations with the PRTB in Q4, 2015, was 27,316. 

The PRTB Index is of assistance for a range of Government purposes, including housing policy generally, and informing the Department of Social Protection’s Rent Supplement scheme. It is also an important reference document in landlord/tenant disputes on rent.  It was developed in consultation and co-operation with landlord representative groups such as the Irish Property Owners Association, irishlandlord.com, the Institute of Professional Auctioneers and Valuers, the Society of Chartered Surveyors of Ireland, and tenant representative groups such as Threshold and USI (Union of Students in Ireland).

 



About the PRTB and the Private Rented Residential Market 

The Private Residential Tenancies Board (PRTB) was established in 2004 to operate a national tenancy registration system and to resolve disputes between landlords and tenants. It also provides policy advice to the Government on the private rented sector, and its dispute resolution service replaces the courts in relation to the majority of landlord and tenant disputes.   According to the 2011 Census, nearly 1 in 5 households in the country were renting their accommodation in the private sector.               


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