Airbnb exodus increases stock of rental property in Dublin by 90%

Reopening of tourism will place pressure on already strained rental market, agent warns

The stock of rental accommodation in Dublin jumped by over 90 per cent last year as the pandemic hit and landlords withdrew their rentals from short-term listing sites such as Airbnb and placed them back on the traditional long-term letting market instead.

The stock of rental accommodation in Dublin jumped by over 90 per cent last year as the pandemic hit and landlords withdrew their rentals from short-term listing sites such as Airbnb and placed them back on the traditional long-term letting market instead.

 

The stock of rental accommodation in Dublin jumped by over 90 per cent last year as the pandemic hit and landlords withdrew their rentals from short-term listing sites such as Airbnb and placed them back on the traditional long-term letting market instead.

Figures from estate agent Sherry FitzGerald – derived from property website Daft.ie – show the number of properties available for rent in the capital rose from 1,593 in November 2019 to 3,039 by the end March 2020.

“This would be explained by Airbnbs coming to the long-term letting market and/or tenants leaving city accommodation,” said Sherry FitzGerald managing director Marian Finnegan.

Property

“If the tourism sector does reopen over the next quarter, a lot of these properties will go back into the more lucrative short-term let market, putting a further pinch point on stock,” she said.

Demand for traditional rental property is likely to pick up as tenants return to the market after months of lockdown and as offices reopen and the Government’s new directives on flexible working come into play, Ms Finnegan said.

These forces will place further pressure on the city’s rental market, she added, while noting that 3,000 properties was still very low in terms of available accommodation.

“If the Airbnb surge was to be reversed, we could be back down to near 1,000 [available rental] units for Dublin,” she said.

The figures come as the Government plans a crackdown on Airbnb-type platforms in a bid to stem the flight of landlords into the short-term letting market.

Under new measures to be announced as part of the Government’s Housing for All strategy, short-term lettings will be subject to strict new licensing rules while the Residential Tenancies Board will be given responsibility for policing the sector.

Housing minister Darragh O’Brien indicated that property owners will not be able to advertise a short-term let unless they have received planning permission to do so. He hopes tighter controls will return thousands of homes to the rental market in Dublin and elsewhere.

‘Scarcity’

In its latest report on the Irish rental sector, Daft.ie noted that just 2,455 homes were available to rent nationally on its website on August 1st last, the lowest number since its quarterly series began in 2006.

It also noted that rent prices nationally rose at an annual rate of 5.6 per cent in the second quarter of 2021, the strongest year-on-year increase since mid-2019.

The increase reflected what it said was an “unprecedented scarcity” of available properties. The figures relates to asking prices being sought on Daft.ie.

According to Daft.ie, the average monthly asking price for rent nationally stood at €1,477 in the second quarter, up almost 99 per cent from a low of €742 per month seen in late 2011, while the average in Dublin was €2,035.