Government must introduce mandatory rent register to tackle spiralling rents
The immediate introduction of a clear and transparent rent register is crucial for the proper enforcement of Rent Pressure Zone legislation. That’s according to national housing charity Threshold, responding to figures from the Residential Tenancies Board’s Q2 2018 Rent Index Report, which show rents increased by an average 7.6% nationally year-on-year.
Commenting, Threshold chief executive, John-Mark McCafferty said: “In 2016, the Government introduced rent pressure zone legislation, which prevented landlords from increasing rent by more than 4 per cent per year in the designated areas. It was designed to both protect existing tenancies and also to enable tenants to move from one property to another. However, the figures released today show a worrying trend whereby rents continue to increase.
He added: “Many of those entering homelessness are doing so because they cannot find affordable accommodation in the private rented sector. Already this year, Threshold’s Tenancy Protection Service has dealt with more than 7,000 calls from people at risk of losing their homes.
“Addressing the upward spiral of rent increases is a key step in solving the current homelessness crisis. While the RPZ legislation is well intentioned, in the absence of a clear and transparent rent register those seeking accommodation have no means of knowing the previous rent being paid for a property and so RPZ measures cannot be enforced.
“We are once again calling on the Minister to introduce as a matter of urgency a mandatory rent register, which would create greater clarity for tenants. This measure, modelled on the Property Price Register, would give renters more certainty about the level of rent they should expect to pay for a property in a particular area.”
Renters who are worried about losing their home can call Threshold’s Tenancy Protection Service on 1800 454 454 for information, advice and support to help protect their tenancies.