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18 Aug 2022

Green Party welcomes greater rights for tenants

Offaly rents increasing quicker than the national average

File photo

The Green Party has welcomed new measures passed in the Oireachtas last week which will give private rental tenants greater security and protection.

The amendments to the Regulation of Providers of Building Works and Miscellaneous Provisions Bill 2022 will mean that:

  • No tenancy in Ireland will have a termination notice period of less than 90 days.
  • Tenancies of less than 3 years will have the minimum notice period increased by 60 days to 180 days.
  • Eviction notices will be null and void unless the landlord informs the Residential Tenancies Board at the same time as the tenant.
  • Further contact between tenant and landlord facilitated to make re-letting easier.

The Party spokesperson for Housing, Deputy Francis Noel Duffy said; "The whole idea here is to give tenants more time and to give landlords pause for thought. Previously, a tenant for less than 6 months could be evicted on 28 days' notice through no fault of their own. This gave families and individuals less than one month to source alternative accommodation.

"As we all know, this proved impossible for many in the current rental supply crunch. In this scenario, people were being driven into emergency accommodation who otherwise would have been able to find a new place to live if they had enough time and notice. There is a world of difference between 3 months and 28 days when in a real crisis.

"We also presented the Minister and Department with the idea that the RTB be informed simultaneously to the tenant. This is in order to keep landlords honest in terms of their dealings with tenants and ensure everything is legally correct and above board. It is also intended as a measure to enable the RTB and state authorities to intervene earlier to help people avoid homeless accommodation.

"These measures will go a long way to protecting tenants and we thank the Minister for listening to us, to tenants´ advocates and to tenants at risk".

Chair of the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Housing, Local Government and Heritage Deputy Steven Matthews said; "It is our hope that the new rights will be a foundation stone for a whole new system of early intervention to prevent homelessness. We envisage a situation where, armed with the new knowledge and data at the RTB´s disposal, local authorities and homeless organisations can become aware of tenants who need additional help and provide that to them. Our guide here is the incredibly successful Integrated Homeless Service in Parnell Street in Waterford city where local authorities have joined forces with the HSE and NGOs such as the Simon Communities and Focus in order to help people avoid homelessness. They have reported that through their efforts they can help 50% and more of their service users to avoid eviction in the first instance."

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