Friday, 6th March 2015
Landlords Must Not Frontload Rent Increases in Advance of Rent Regulation – Threshold
Threshold, the national housing charity, has today (06.03.15) called on Government to roll out a public education campaign immediately to ensure tenants are fully informed about their rights in relation to rent increases.
Commenting today, Bob Jordan, Chief Executive of Threshold, expressed concern that landlords may seek to frontload rent increases in expectation of a system of rent certainty being introduced.
“Minister Alan Kelly spoke last weekend about his desire to see a system of rent certainty introduced,” said Mr. Jordan. “This is to be welcomed: Threshold has been highlighting the need for rent certainty for the past 18 months. We believe it is essential to stem the growing levels of homelessness and ensure families can afford to remain in their homes.
“However, we are concerned that – in advance of any formal announcement by Government – landlords may now move to frontload rent increases. Tenants must be protected from such retaliatory hikes in rent.
“We believe a public education campaign is needed immediately to alert tenants to their rights in relation to rent increases. This should be rolled out by the Department of the Environment and the Private Residential Tenancies Board.
“If tenants are not made aware of their rights, there is a risk they may face even higher rent increases in unfair circumstances. Threshold will vigorously defend any tenant who faces an unfair rent increase, especially where a landlord is seeking to avoid compliance with the law.”
Rules in Relation to Rent Increases
Threshold set out the rules in relation to rent increases, under existing laws and regulations, as follows:
“A system of rent certainty is long overdue in Ireland, and badly needed,” said Senator Aideen Hayden, Chairperson of Threshold. “Over the past couple of years, we have witnessed steeply rising rents in major urban centres, and this has contributed directly to growing levels of homelessness.
“Threshold has consistently called on Government to introduce a system of rent certainty as a matter of urgency. This must be prioritised. However, in the meantime, we must also ensure landlords do not hike up rents in anticipation of such a system. As a starting point, we urge tenants to become fully informed about their rights and entitlements and to contact Threshold if they feel they are being subjected to an unfair rent increase.”
Contact: Martina Quinn, DHR Communications, Tel: 01-4200580 / 087-6522033
Notes to Editors:
The rent index published by the PRTB / ESRI is available at: http://www.prtb.ie/landlords/rent-index-dec-2014.
Threshold was founded in 1978 and is a not-for-profit organisation whose aim is to secure a right to housing, particularly for households experiencing the problems of poverty and exclusion. Its main concentration of work is within the rented sector. It provides advice and representation to over 20,000 people each year. Further information is available at www.threshold.ie, @ThresholdIRE.