People Before Profit demand rent controls, rent allowance increase and an emergency house building programme

People Before Profit have called on the Government to introduce rent controls immediately to help alleviate the situation in the private rental sector which is spiraling out of control.

According to the Daft report written by Ronan Lyons, released today rents in Dublin are now 1.3% higher than they were in early 2008. The report, points out that supply of housing is now at the lowest point on record.

img_4276Richard Boyd Barrett TD said: “For years now we have been saying that the situation in the private rented sector is spiraling out of control. Today, we have seen clear evidence of this due to the releasing of the Daft report. Rents are now the highest they have been since 2008 and supply has never been lower. The proposed rent allowance increase of 15% will not keep up with the increasing rent prices in the country. Peter Mc Verry says a minimum 28% increase is needed to be even at the 2008 level.

“One of the most serious issues facing this country is the epidemic of the housing and homelessness crisis. We are now at crisis point with this crisis and the new Government, like the last, are just continuing with the same strategy. We pointed out years ago that the measures taken at the time by the Government would not work and low and behold the situation has not only not gotten better it has gotten worse.

““I am calling on Simon Coveney, as his first act as Housing Minister, to intervene in this dire situation and immediately introduce rent controls so that we can halt the ever increasing cost of rents and increase the rent allowance by 28%. But, fundamentally we need an emergency social house building programme that will house the homeless.

We also need to establish a new Rental Board that oversees rental prices according to transparent criteria, reduce rents where they do not meet these criteria and limit rent increases to the rate of inflation. NAMA must also stop selling off property portfolios to vulture funds and use it resources to house people.

“There remains a grave situation in this country where families are living in hotel rooms, drug infested hostels and in some cases cars. According to the Simon Community there has been a 12% increase in rough sleepers since Winter 2015. This scandalous situation cannot be allowed to go on. I am calling for the new Minister to take effective and holistic action immediately.