We need your help now

Support from readers like you keeps The Journal open.

You are visiting us because we have something you value. Independent, unbiased news that tells the truth. Advertising revenue goes some way to support our mission, but this year it has not been enough.

If you've seen value in our reporting, please contribute what you can, so we can continue to produce accurate and meaningful journalism. For everyone who needs it.

eviction ban

Landlord group says it has 'deep-rooted' reservations about potential eviction ban

Housing Minister Darragh O’Brien yesterday said he has been “exploring options” regarding an eviction ban.

THE IRISH PROPERTY Owners’ Association (IPOA) has said it has “deep-rooted” reservations about a possible move to introduce eviction bans on landlords whose tenants cannot pay their rents. 

The group said it is its contention that such a measure “would be disastrous for the sector and it will only serve to dissuade landlords from continuing to maintain properties to rent”. 

The IPOA’s statement comes after Minister for Housing Darragh O’Brien yesterday said that while no decision has been made regarding a blanket eviction ban yet, he has been “exploring options”. 

“We’ve got to be very careful that any measures that could potentially be taken don’t have unintended consequences either, such as further diminishing the rental supply that is there,” O’Brien told Newstalk’s On The Record

“We’re doing this while thankfully, in a positive way, we’re seeing an increase in new build supply right across social and affordable housing and indeed private housing and we need to see that continue,” the Minister said. 

A number of opposition parties have been calling for an eviction ban, with TDs in many parties stating that their constituency offices are filling up with people with notice to quit evictions that are due to come into effect in the winter and new year.

On Thursday, Taoiseach Micheál Martin said the introduction of a ban on evictions this winter is being kept under review by Government. 

Speaking to reporters at the inaugural summit of the “European Political Community” in Prague, he said Housing Minister Darragh O’Brien had consulted with the attorney general about a ban.

It is understood the Department of Housing is in consultation with the AG’s office, but the minister is very conscious of need to carefully assess whether restricting property rights would be the subject of a legal challenge or would lead to more ordinary landlords leaving the system.

There are also concerns interference could jeopardise continued investment in the rental accommodation market.

The IPOA claimed the recent Budget provided an opportunity to introduce fiscal supports for the sector, which would have alleviated supply issues, but that support was not forthcoming. 

“As the representative body for small landlords, we have grave reservations about such moves happening without consultation with the sector, and particuarly so because the proposed measures could have the effect of completely eroding the constitutional rights and protections desgined to protect property owners,” IPOA chairperson Mary Conway said. 

Conway said landlords are “not immune to the cost of living crisis”, adding that many of them “depend on their rental income to pay their mortgages, and other business expenses, while trying to make provisions for their families and pensions in the years to come”. 

“We are calling on Government to avoid this highly discriminatory and divisive proposal and instead work with the sector to help to increase supply in the market,” she said. 

“Through such meaningful engagement, measures could be designed to stave off the ever-increasing numbers who are leaving the residential property sector becasue of their deep disillusionment with the increasing regulatory and financial burdens associated with letting a property,” she said. 

Speaking in the Dáil on Thursday afternoon, Tánaiste Leo Varadkar said a winter eviction ban would just “store up the problem” for Spring.

He said evictions are relatively uncommon in Ireland and if someone gets a notice to quit, they have a period of time before they have to leave the property. 

“I think the difficulty with a ban on evictions is that it stores up the problem for when you lift the ban. And that’s part of what we’re experiencing now. So I know some people say you have a blanket ban over the winter period, but what then happens in the spring? It doesn’t necessarily solve the problem. It just defers and makes it worse a little bit later,” he added. 

The IPOA has written to the coalition party leaders to oppose a potential eviction ban. 

With reporting by Christina Finn

Readers like you are keeping these stories free for everyone...
A mix of advertising and supporting contributions helps keep paywalls away from valuable information like this article. Over 5,000 readers like you have already stepped up and support us with a monthly payment or a once-off donation.

Your Voice
Readers Comments
This is YOUR comments community. Stay civil, stay constructive, stay on topic. Please familiarise yourself with our comments policy here before taking part.
Leave a Comment
    Submit a report
    Please help us understand how this comment violates our community guidelines.
    Thank you for the feedback
    Your feedback has been sent to our team for review.

    Leave a commentcancel