Time to give renters a break says Labour's Denis Hynes

Kilkenny People Reporter

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Denis Hynes

Time to give renters a break says Labour's Denis Hynes

The Labour Party has published their plans to give renters a break and is proposing to re-introduce a rent-to-buy scheme for those seeking to get on the property ladder.

The average rent hit record highs before Christmas, with those in Dublin reaching nearly €2,300. According to the last census nearly 30% of all households in Ireland are renters, while home ownership is at the lowest level since 1971.

Carlow-Kilkenny Candidate Cllr. Denis Hynes says “Renters account for a significant proportion of households in Ireland now, and yet are among the most vulnerable. Average rents are now at all time high and people have very little security in their rental properties.

“Renters already struggling with the high cost of living and can often barely afford to make ends meet, yet alone save for a deposit to buy their own home. We also know that more people are becoming homeless from the private rental sector.

“The last Government has failed to get a handle on this crisis and the Rent Pressure Zones have not capped rising rents, instead permitting annual increases of 4%. The incredible u-turn by Fianna Fáil on a rent freeze shows that the main parties are not prepared to help those most in need.

“That is why we say enough is enough, and that renters need a break. The Labour Party will immediately freeze and cap rents until enough homes have been built.

“We will bring in stronger rent controls and long-term leases for renters, and we’ll stop unfair evictions, while setting up an NCT-style inspection for rental properties to ensure that rogue landlords aren’t going unchecked.

“We’ll bring in a deposit protection scheme and create a rent register so tenants can see what the pervious tenant was charged.

“We also want to make renting count, and reform the existing credit rating model to ensure that rental payments- as well as saving deposit accounts- are counted as part of an individual or couple’s credit rating.

“Labour believes that the State must take the lead on this and pick up the pieces from where the private sector has failed. That is why a central offering of our new plan is a Rent to Buy scheme through our affordable housing plan where a person with a tenancy for three years that successfully pays all their rent would see it turned into a deposit for the property that they will then go on to own.”