Minister for Housing Simon Coveney has confirmed rent caps are to be extended to Galway city and 23 towns.
They were declared “rent pressure zones” after the Government reached agreement with Fianna Fáil. Galway city, nine towns in Meath, seven in Kildare, three in Wicklow and four in Cork will have rent increases restricted to 4 per cent per annum for the next three years.
Mr Coveney said he was delivering on the commitment he gave when he published the Government’s rental strategy in December, naming Dublin and Cork as rent-pressure zones.
Opposition TDs have criticised the decision not to add Waterford and Limerick to the list.
Push for more towns
Fianna Fáil spokesman on housing Barry Cowen said the party would continue to push for more towns to be included. He said they had sought the inclusion of 40 towns.
Labour TD Jan O’Sullivan said tenants in Waterford and Limerick would suffer as a result of the decision. “This is disastrous for tenants who are already struggling to pay and now face rises they can’t afford. Linking rent increases to the consumer price index as the Labour Party has proposed would have been a much fairer way to go.
“The people of Limerick, Waterford and other parts of the country are now left with no protection from steep hikes, which is a direct result of this legislation.”
Rent pressure zones
Mr Coveney said in drawing up the list of rent pressure zones, he was guided solely by information given by the Residential Tenancies Board.
“In rough speak there needs to be a sustained level of unsustainable rental increases for four of the last six months. There needs to have been at least seven per cent annual rental inflation in rental markets.
“Secondly, it needs to be a high rent in that area, it needs to be above the national average.
“I want to reassure people. This isn’t politicians making designations to be popular or to try and bring home good news to their areas.”
Towns to have rent caps:
Naas, Sallins , Celbridge, Leixlip, Rathangan, Kildare, Newbridge, Slane, Julianstown, Duleek, Laytown, Bettystown, Ashbourne, Dunboyne, Dunshaughlin, Ratoath, Bray, Enniskerry, Wicklow, Douglas, Ballincollig, Carrigaline and Passage West