Chronic under supply of rental property across entire region

May 21st, 2021 5:50 PM

By Emma Connolly

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RENTS in Cork county have increased 8.7% in the past year with a chronic shortage of rental homes in the region and the entire country.

That’s a key finding of the latest rental report by Ronan Lyons, economist at Trinity College Dublin.

The report found that rents nationally in the first three months of 2021 were on average 2.1% higher than in the final three months of 2020.

The average national monthly rent stood at €1,443 in the first quarter of 2021, up 1.7% year-on-year and up almost 95% from a low of €742 per month seen in late 2011.

The average rent in county Cork is now €1,137. That’s a 2.8% increase on the same quarter last year, and an 8.7% year-on-year change.

Mr Lyons highlighted the country’s low rental supply, with just 1,150 homes available to rent on May 1st, down one third from the same date in 2020.

‘Covid-19 has done many things and wrought changes previously thought unthinkable in many instances.

‘What it cannot do, however, is change the simple fact that for close to 30 years, Ireland has built too few homes. This is particularly true for homes for smaller households, homes in urban areas and rental homes,’ said Ronan Lyons.

‘It is imperative that housing policy in general – and rental market policy in particular – be driven by an understanding of the challenges and required solutions, rather than news-cycle pressures. Limiting the country’s ability to harness foreign savings to build the rental homes it needs – for example, by limiting the ability of professional landlords to invest here – will worsen, rather than improve, the situation.

‘The doubling of rents over the last decade is all the proof needed that Ireland needs to build tens of thousands of new rental homes over coming years.’

Meanwhile, new figures released this week from the Central Statistics Office show house prices rose at their fastest rate in two years in March of this year.

Nationally they rose by 3.7% in the year to March.

In Dublin, the increase was 2.5% while outside Dublin prices rose by 4.9%.

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