Report finds 20% drop in availability of affordable rental properties

Report Finds 20% Drop In Availability Of Affordable Rental Properties
SALE AGREED sign seen outside a building in Ranelagh, Dublin. On Thursday, 08 July 2021, in Dublin, Ireland (Photo by Artur Widak/NurPhoto)
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James Cox

The Simon Communities of Ireland’s quarterly Locked Out report has found a 20 per cent deterioration in just three months in the availability of affordable rental properties across the country, and a 27 per cent deterioration in six months.

The June 2021 study found there were 2,208 properties available to rent at any price within the 16 areas examined over the three dates (June 21st, 22nd and 23rd) surveyed.


This represents a 20 per cent decrease from the 2,757 properties which were available to rent at any price in the March 2021 Locked

Out study period. This is further down 27 per cent from the 3,019 properties available in the December 2020 Locked Out study.

The supply is overwhelmingly driven by Dublin.

The Locked Out report examines the experience of people on a low income and dependent on housing assistance payment (HAP) to access housing in the private rental market.


It also looks at the availability of homes to rent over a three-day period.

The report considers the availability of properties within both the standard and discretionary HAP limits in 16 areas around the country for four household categories: single person, couple, couple/one parent and one child and couple/one parent and two children.

Of the 2,208 properties available during the three days in June 2021, no properties (one-bedroom units) were within standard HAP limits for single people across the 16 areas.

The June 2021 study found there were 906 properties available to rent within a standard or discretionary HAP limit in at least one of the four household categories, representing 41 per cent of the total properties available.


This is a 14 per cent decrease on the 1,055 properties which were available to rent within at least one HAP category in the December study.

There were just 63 instances of those properties coming within a standard HAP rate in one of the four categories. The rest of the properties within HAP rates required the discretionary HAP top up.

Wayne Stanley, head of policy and communications at the Simon Communities of Ireland, said: “The ongoing tightening of supply and erosion of affordability in the private rental market that we are seeing will lead to increased homelessness. HAP rates have to be addressed in the short term to keep people in their homes and support them out of homelessness. However, we cannot continue to chase rents and we need delivery of public housing.”

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