10 Aug 2022

Rental supply in Kilkenny at 'tipping point' as many landlords opt to sell up

Rental supply in Kilkenny at 'tipping point' as many landlords opt to sell up

An exodus of ‘one-off’ and small landlords from the local housing market is bringing rental property supply issues to a boiling point in Kilkenny.

Speaking to the Kilkenny People, a leading local sales agent confirmed that more and more one-off and small landlords are selling up locally.

“The situation really reached a tipping point at the start of this year,” explains Ciarán Dunphy from DNG Ella Dunphy.

“We have sold approximately one third of our landlord clients’ properties in the last twelve months.”

As property prices continue to soar, many landlords appear to be taking the opportunity to sell up.

This is particularly the case for one-off, small and accidental landlords who wish to be free of all the red tape, regulations and taxes that come with an investment property.

“We are commonly met with the opinion that high rents are the result of greed from landlords but it’s much more complex than that,” Dunphy continues.

“For starters, landlords couldn’t charge high rents if there was an adequate supply of rental homes on the market. Tenants would simply have more choice.

“Many landlords are also hit with rising costs and have factored this into rents.”

Costs such as letting fees, property insurance and property maintenance have all reduced the appeal of becoming a one-off or small landlord in Kilkenny.

Maintaining local rental properties to appropriate standards is also a big issue locally, as highlighted by a recent study from the National Oversight and Audit Commission (NOAC).

The Commission found 100% of properties inspected in Kilkenny to be non-compliant with standards regulations.

Kilkenny was one of only six counties in the entire country that recorded the maximum rate.

For one-off or accidental landlords actively paying off an existing mortgage, the appeal of maintaining a home in the rental sector is thus weakened further.

A record scarcity of rental homes in Kilkenny has coincided with a sharp increase in rents, cost-of-living and inflation.
This will serve to prolong the period that many prospective homeowners will spend trapped in the rental market, unable to secure their own mortgage.

Renters in Kilkenny faced average rent increases of 12.1% for the first three months of 2022, compared to the same period last year.

To add fuel to the fire, preliminary Census 2022 results have highlighted a hugely disproportionate increase in the number of vacant dwellings in Kilkenny.

The number of vacant dwellings in the county has increased by 6.3% since 2016 at a time when long-term rental properties are so difficult to secure.

Ultimately, as more landlords opt to leave the rental market and fewer homeowners are in a position to become a landlord, the local rental market is being hamstrung.

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