First national register of tenancies is published
The first national register of tenancies throughout the State has been published, allowing tenants and other interested parties to check whether landlords have properly registered their properties.
About 80,000 houses and flats, almost half of them in Dublin, are listed in the register just published by the Private Residential Tenancies Board.
This means that landlords owning up to half of the estimated 150,000 rented dwellings in the State have failed to register with the PRTB, as required by law.
The PRTB has compiled the names of individual landlords and tenants and rent levels for each registered tenancy, but these are not disclosed in the extracted version of the published register.
However, information on the address, floor space, number of bedrooms and number of bed spaces in respect of each tenancy is provided.
The list shows that some tenants are living in bedsits as small as 8 sq m.
The register has been published on a county-by-county basis in spreadsheet form on the board's website, www.prtb.ie
A hard copy is available to view in the offices of the PRTB, Canal House, Canal Road, Dublin 6.
Unfortunately, the list is littered with misspellings and other errors that make it difficult to search electronically.
In the Dublin area, for example, some of the entries refer to places such as "Dartery", "Blancherdstown", "Dunlaughere", "Herolds Cross" and "Shankell".
Since the introduction of the Residential Tenancies Act, 2004, landlords face double fees for failing to register on time, while anyone who refuses to register faces penalties of up to €3,000 and/or a prison sentence of up to six months.
Registration costs €70 per tenancy, and landlords have to provide a variety of information, such as rent levels and PPSN numbers.
But the Irish Property Owners' Association has said that it is considering mounting a legal challenge against what it calls the "unworkable bureaucracy" of the PRTB.
The PRTB was unable to provide a spokesperson yesterday to say what action has been taken against landlords for non-compliance.
The Private Residential Tenancies Board's website is at www.prtb.ie