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Private Rented Sector

Rent Pressure Zones

The Planning & Development (Housing) and Residential Tenancies Act 2016 was enacted in December 2016. In relation to residential tenancies it amends, among other things, the Residential Tenancies Act, 2004 to provide for the introduction of rent pressure zones:

24A.(1) The Housing Agency, following consultation with the relevant housing authority, may make a proposal in writing to the Minister that an area be prescribed by order as a rent pressure zone.

What is a rent pressure zone?

A rent pressure zone is an area where;

  1.  it is recommended by the Housing Agency that an area should be designated as such, following consultation with the relevant local authority, and having regard to the housing and rental market in the area and the following two criteria have been met, to be confirmed by the Director of the Residential Tenancies Board;
  2.  annual rents have increased by more than 7% for four out of the previous six quarters; and
  3.  rents are above the national average. 

This status applies for a maximum three-year period, during which landlords are restricted to a maximum 4% rent increase per annum. An ‘area’ can be the administrative area of a housing authority or a local electoral area.

The Act provided for the immediate introduction of rent pressure zones in the Dublin and the administrative area of Cork City Council.

What’s the Housing Agency’s Role?

The Agency’s role in the designation of rent pressure zones is, following consultation with the relevant housing authority, and having considered the housing and rental market in relevant areas, to make a proposal in writing to the Minister that an area be prescribed by order as a rent pressure zone.   

The Minister then refers this proposal (within 1 week of receipt) to the Director of the Residential Tenancies Board to make a report on the matter.  The Director is required to do so within two weeks, drawing on the Rent Index quarterly report. 

If the two criteria above are met, the Minister prescribes the area as a rent pressure zone for a specified period not exceeding 3 years.  

The Minister may revoke a rent pressure zone order on the recommendation of the Housing Agency.  In making any such recommendation, the Agency is required to consider the operation of the rental (and broader housing) market, changes in rent levels since designation and is also required to consult with the Residential Tenancies Board and the housing authority concerned.

Housing Agency Proposals to Designate Certain Electoral Areas

January 2017 Proposal to Minister Coveney

 

 

Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) Reports

A partnership arrangement with the RTB was entered into in 2006 to manage a number of research projects on their behalf . The most recent reports are:

 

Experiences of Travellers in the Private Rented Sector Download

Future of the Private Rented Sector: [PDF 7,376kb] Download

Rent Stability in the Private Rented Sector: [PDF 3,284kb] Download

The reports were prepared for the Housing agency on behalf of the Residential Tenancies Board.

 

 

Regulatory Impact Assessment (RIA) Revision of the Standards Regulations Applying to the Private Rented Sector

Three options are outlined and analysed in the Regulatory Impact Assessment:

  • Option 1 is to make no policy change
  • Option 2 is to enact and implement the new regulations
  • Option 3 is to introduce a higher level of regulation by requiring landlords to have a licence or property standards compliance certificate before being able to rent out any form of accommodation.

Regulatory Impact Assessment (RIA) Revision of the Standards Regulations Applying to the Private Rented Sector [PDF 123kb]