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Dublin: 11 °C Wednesday 23 October, 2019
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One in three landlords getting rent supplement aren't registered - board

The Private Residential Tenancies Board tells an Oireachtas committee that some 17,000 landlords haven’t been registered.

Image: Mark Stedman/Photocall Ireland

OVER ONE THIRD of landlords in receipt of rent supplement from the Department of Social Protection have not fulfilled their legal requirement to register with the private tenancies authority.

Officials from the Private Residential Tenancies Board told an Oireachtas committee yesterday that it had found 17,000 landlords so far this year who were receiving supplements from the State without registering with teh Board.

Landlords are required to register any individual tenancy with the PRTB, which doubles as a conflict resolution body. Rent supplements are ordinarily paid directly to a tenant through the Department, however – meaning they can then be handed on.

The board said that, based on records forwarded from the Department, around 34 per cent of landlords who were being paid a rent supplement by their tenants were not registered – a breach of legislation introduced in 2004.

The PRTB said it was prepared to prosecute landlords who were not currently in compliance with the requirements, but would initially offer them a grace period to arrange their affairs.

This number is expected to fall in the future, as it becomes obligatory to supply a landlord’s PPS number when claiming rent supplement.

Under a similar scheme run by the Revenue Commissioners, which entitles private tenants to claim tax relief based on what they pay for rental accommodation, claimants are required to supply their landlord’s PPS number.

The Joint Oireachtas Committee on the Environment was discussing proposals for a deposit retention scheme, which the government is proposing to introduce against the wishes of landlords and property agencies.

Student representatives told the committee that the proposal – which would see deposits left with a third party instead of with the landlord – was a sensible progression, but industry representatives said it was unnecessary.

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Gavan Reilly

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