Boyd Barrett warns of ‘looming crisis’ for tenants

TD says thousands or even tens of thousands of families could be evicted

Richard Boyd Barrett TD: “At the very least we need guidelines along the lines of the codes of conduct on mortgage arrears, for tenants in receivership situations.”

Richard Boyd Barrett TD: “At the very least we need guidelines along the lines of the codes of conduct on mortgage arrears, for tenants in receivership situations.”

Fri, Mar 28, 2014, 01:00


Thousands of renting households are facing eviction, even if they have been paying their rent on time throughout their tenancies, a press conference was told yesterday.

Richard Boyd Barrett TD of People Before Profit warned of a “looming crisis” as tenants, whose landlords had gone into receivership, are being given notices to quit by the banks. He said that when landlords’ assets are taken over by the banks, they are taken over by receivers who will often make an economic decision to either sell the properties or seek a higher rent. Tenants in such dwellings had no rights, he said.

“So you have a situation where a family might have been paying their rent on time for years but if their landlord is taken over by the banks, they can be evicted. For the families involved there is nothing being offered by the State but fear and anxiety. They are at their wits’ end.” He said that thousands or even tens of thousands of families could be evicted.

‘Guidelines’
“At the very least we need guidelines along the lines of the codes of conduct on mortgage arrears, for tenants in receivership situations.”

At the press conference were a couple, Rachael Kelly and Wayne Fitzgerald, who along with their three children face eviction from their home in Wicklow town. They have never missed a rent payment but got a letter in November from a receiver giving them notice to quit. Neither is working and the maximum rent allowance they can get from the Department of Social Protection is €550 per month.

“A three-bedroom house in Wicklow town is about €950, or a two-bed is €850,” said Mr Fitzgerald. “We just can’t afford that. Most landlords won’t accept rent allowance anyway.”

Mr Boyd Barrett said he was being contacted by families “on a daily basis, right across the country” in the same situation.