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Emergency rent freeze extension, despite ‘legal implications’

17 Jul 2020 / property Print

Emergency rent freeze extension, despite ‘legal implications’

Housing Minister Darragh O’Brien has confirmed that the rent freeze and eviction moratorium imposed during the COVID-19 pandemic will be extended beyond the current 20 July deadline.

Housing charity Threshold welcomed the extension, but said it awaited more clarity on the duration of the extension and any changes to the ban.

Long-term

A statement said Minister O’Brien would bring a memo to Cabinet on Monday after further consultation on the issue. He also said he was working with officials and the Attorney General on long-term solutions for renters.

“I have been clear in my desire to see the rent freeze and eviction moratorium extended. However, I am very aware that there are legal implications for doing so,” he said.

The minister added that it was important to have alternative protections in place to safeguard renters, as the rent freeze and pause on evictions would not be extended indefinitely. He hopes to have legislation enacted before the Dáil recess.

RTB analysis

The extension announcement came as an analysis by the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) showed the impact of the pandemic on rental inflation.

The RTB said the annual increase in average rents had been 3% in March, but by June prices were down 3.3% on the same month in 2019.

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