New tenants are paying an average rent of €1,464 a month, or €17,568 a year, according to the latest Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) figures.
Homelessness support groups have called on the Government to introduce more rent controls to alleviate the “dire” consequences of the rise in rents, which were up by 8.2 per cent on the same period last year.
The average for Dublin was €2,011, compared with €1,130 outside the capital. Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown in Dublin continues to be the most expensive place in the State to rent a home, at a monthly average of €2,231.
The figures relate to private sector tenancies in the second quarter of the year and are based on 12,701 new tenancies commenced in that period, a 16 per cent decrease on the number commenced in the first quarter. Dublin and the greater Dublin area accounted for 54 per cent of all new tenancies signed.
Homelessness charity Threshold said the report “makes clear” the need for the Government to introduce more rent controls in order to get a grip on the crisis. Ann-Marie O’Reilly, the group’s national advocacy manager, said renters in regional areas were facing “extortionate increases, leaving no area of the country unaffected by the housing crisis”.
Simon Communities head of policy Wayne Stanley said the period of the current moratorium on evictions must be used to find solutions as tenants will be “back to square one” when it ends in March.
“Any time we look at the latest data, we think there is no way it can get any worse than this, and every quarter it does get worse and the market does get tighter, and the rents keep going up,” he said. “At some point it has to plateau. We keep thinking there has to be an end point to this somewhere, but it just doesn’t seem to come.”
The RTB figures show rents increased faster for houses (1.4 per cent) than for apartments (0.3 per cent) in the three months to June. However, over the past year, the increase across both home types is virtually identical at 8.4 per cent and 8.5 per cent respectively.
Donegal remains the cheapest place in the State in which to rent a home, at €783 a month. Reported rents paid by new tenants actually fell in nine counties in the second quarter compared with the three months previous, with Kildare seeing the most dramatic decline, at 4.9 per cent.
Over the past year, according to the RTB figures, rents have fallen in Wicklow (by 2 per cent) and Kildare (-1.1 per cent).
However, annual increases of more than 10 per cent in the rent charged on new tenancies were reported in 14 counties, with Leitrim reporting the biggest jump at 20 per cent.
“We also see a continued decrease in the number of tenancies registered with the RTB in the quarter,” said RTB director Niall Byrne. “These results are likely due to a mix of factors, including the continued limited supply of rental accommodation.”