- 09 Mar 23
These new figures come amidst the Government's decision to end the eviction ban, which has been in place since the autumn of 2022.
Recent figures show that fewer TDs currently list rental properties as a source of income than those of the previous Dáil, which was dissolved in 2020.
The Dáil register of members’ interests for 2022 shows that 27 TDs are currently landlords, compared to the 35 of the previous group. This trend mirrors a greater exodus from the property market, as landowners across the country sell their rental properties amidst the worsening housing crisis.
Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, who also rents out property, faced angry backlash this week over the termination of the eviction ban, as many renters fear they will face homelessness come April. "This is happening because the Government has utterly failed to provide accessible homes for citizens," said Jim O’Sullivan, Co. Sligo in an open letter in the Independent. He also called the decision "heartless" and "reckless."
The Government asserts that the termination of the ban is to prevent even more landlords from leaving the property market, reducing an already insufficient number of rental accommodations.
“I think one of the errors that is easily made in prescribing solutions to the housing crisis is only looking at one aspect of it and not seeing how everything is interlinked,” said Varadkar to reporters Wednesday. "Renters need landlords and landlords need renters."
Varadkar is renting out his Dublin apartment while he lives with his partner Matthew Barrett.
Health Minister Stephen Donnelly recently spoke out at a Cabinet discussion, asserting the lack of supports that landlords face. “There will be a continued exodus from the market if something isn’t done on the taxation side, was the message coming from the ministers who spoke,” a Cabinet source told the Independent of the meeting. Donelly himself rents out two properties.
The Dáil’s biggest landlord is Independent Michael Healy-Rae who owns 18 properties–two of which he lists as vacant, noting that they are under contract for refugee accommodation.
Healy-Rae previously called upon the Government to put a cap on the number of Ukrainian refugees Ireland takes in.