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rental crisis

Airbnb criticised for its 'adverse effect' on the rental market in Dublin

There are more than 5,300 places available to rent on Airbnb in Dublin city alone.

THERE ARE MORE than 5,300 places available to rent on Airbnb in Dublin city alone, with over 6,700 available when Dublin county is also included.

The Oireachtas Committee on Housing met today to discuss the impacts that short-term rentals are having on the rental market in Ireland.

There has been criticism of the Airbnb service, which allows people to rent rooms or entire homes for short periods of time, and which is seen as further reducing the supply of rental properties for people living in Dublin.

In figures presented by Dr Daithí Downey of Dublin City Council (DCC), it was shown that almost half (48%) of the Airbnb rentals within the Dublin city limits are available to be booked for more than 90 days of the year.

These 2,581 listings are identified as ‘high availability’. Of these, 1,375 are listed as entire homes or apartments.

The average number of days per year that a “highly available” listing is booked for is 132 days, with entire homes being taken for 236 days. While nobody on the committee could say that these were homes which would otherwise be rented on the private market, DCC’s Richard Shakespeare said the website was having an “adverse effect” on supply.

The figures, which came from the website Inside Airbnb, also showed that the top 10 hosts on Airbnb have at least 14 listings on the site, with DCC saying this are “likely” full-time Airbnb properties. The top two have 28 apiece.

DCC says that it will now commission a study to report in October to make recommendations on the issue.

Sinn Féin’s Eoin O’Broin, a member of the committee, said that the government is “dragging its heels” on the issue of regulation for short-term lettings.

“Seven months ago, An Bord Pleanála upheld a ruling that a property owner in Temple Bar required planning permission to continue renting the property out for short-term lets. The former Minister for Housing Simon Coveney supported this ruling and, before Christmas, stated that plans were being made to clamp down on this type of activity.

Despite the ongoing rental crisis, we have learned that the government working group established to look at this issue has only met once, and that was last week. We know the Department met with Airbnb in January this year and it appears nothing has been achieved since.

It was confirmed in the meeting that nobody had been prosecuted under the same laws used to make the ruling against the Temple Bar property owner.

Read: Working group to review if AirBnb should face regulations

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