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President Higgins signs rent increase bill into law

All rent increases will now be made in line with the nation’s inflation rate.

Image: RollingNews.ie

Updated Jul 9th 2021, 9:50 PM

PRESIDENT MICHAEL D HIGGINS has signed a new bill that will see the 4% rent hike rule scrapped into law. 

The Residential Tenancies (No. 2) Bill 2021 was brought forward to the Dáil by the Minister for Housing Darragh O’Brien last month. 

It was passed in both the Dáil and the Seanad and has now been signed into law by the president.

The Bill will ensure that rent for properties in Rent Pressure Zones (RPZs) can only be increased in line with the Harmonised Index of Consumer Prices (HICP). 

Previously, landlords had the power to increase rents in RPZs by 4% annually. 

There were concerns that landlords would impose rent increases of up to 8% on tenants once the temporary ban on evictions and a rent freeze set during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic came to an end. 

However, this law will not allow for an 8% rise. 

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Minister O’Brien has said that “we are now taking action to ensure that tenants will only pay rent increases if required to, which are in line with general inflation, which is currently below 2%.”

He has also said that the new law will restrict the level of upfront payments tenants are required to pay to a total value that does not exceed two months’ rent to cover any deposit, and one month’s rent in advance.

The Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) will establish and maintain a new RPZ calculator and publish a table of relevant HICP values to assist with the lawful setting of rents in these pressure areas.

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