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Dead Money?

The figures are in: Are you paying above average for your rented property?

People are now not driven to commuter belts by a preference for green space – but by the hard maths of affordability.

DURING 2014, THERE was much talk and debate about the housing crisis and how it impacted everybody in the rental market – from those being pushed into homelessness to those paying more than a fair price for the product they were receiving.

Today, the figures are in to show just how much rent prices grew over the 12 months because of that significant tightening of supply.

According to’s latest Rental Report, the national average rent between October and December was just under €950 – that is 9.7% higher than 2013, when it was €865. Even so, that represents an increase that eased slightly in the last three months of the year, compared to the first three quarters.

The national trend is really being driven by the capital and its commuter belts. Dublin’s rental inflation eased from a whopper 16.5% in April to below 10% in January. In the four commuter counties, landlords were able to charge an average of 14.1% more than a year previously.

What about everywhere else?

Rents continued to rise but at a slightly slower pace outside Dublin.


Cork saw rents climb 7.3% in the year, Galway a 7% jump, Limerick’s rise was recorded at 6.2% and Waterford’s rent inflation settled at 5.1%. 

  • Dublin: €1,350, up 11.5%
  • Cork: €891, up 7.3%
  • Galway: €871, up 7.0%
  • Limerick: €702, up 6.2%
  • Waterford: €624, up 5.1%

On 1 February this year, there were just over 5,200 properties available to rent in Ireland. That figure represents a 25% fall and the lowest level of availability since May 2007.

A flight from Dublin city. 

A lack of affordable properties in Dublin (where just 34,000 listings came online), led to a flight to commuter counties including Louth, Meath, Kildare and Wicklow. Kildare saw a 15.5% rise in rents, the highest in the country.

The 34,000 figure is 13% less than in 2013 and over 40% less than in 2011. So a city that has grown by perhaps 40,000 new families – most of them renters – since 2011 has 40% fewer rental listings each year. The 31% increase in rents since the end of 2010 makes sense when these figures are borne in mind.

“The underlying lack of construction in a city growing by roughly 10,000 new families every year has created a new generation of commuter, one driven not by preference for green space but by the hard maths of affordability,” says author and TCD economist Ronan Lyons.

“The low-down in rental inflation in Dublin at a time when new listings are sluggish suggests that a limit to affordability has been reached there. Over the last 12 months, availability has stabilised in Dublin at very low levels, while it has tightened further in the Commuter Counties.”


The report also issued a warning that the scarcity of homes (that is continuing to worsen, it claims) threatens “Dublin’s international competitiveness and the more serious issue of homelessness”.

Is it actually cheap to rent anywhere?

Renters pay a premium to live in the areas around the city centre, most obviously Dublin 4 and Dublin 2. Options in Rathmines, Ranelagh and Rathgar have also pushed up prices in Dublin 6.

But there are areas where the average rent hasn’t jumped too much.


The cheapest options can be seen in Ulster, where Donegal and Monaghan have seen minimal rent inflation (at just 1.2% and 0.4% respectively).

Average rent in Connacht currently runs at €501 per month, with Galway the anomaly in terms of price increases. Mayo, Roscommon, Sligo and Leitrim all saw rents rise but only between 2.2% and 3.3%.

Am I paying more than average?

If you’re in a city, Daft has complete a comparison for various areas based on whether you sleep on a single or double bed.


And a further handy chart to see you’re paying above or below the odds.


Are you getting a good deal? Would you prefer to be paying a mortgage? Tell us about your renting experiences in the comments section. 

Journal Media Ltd has shareholders in common with Distilled Media Group.

More: Thinking of putting your home on Ebay? You might want to read this first

Earlier: Here is what it costs to rent a property in Ireland

Wow: This building was constructed using a 3D printer. Yes, a BUILDING.

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