Drastic rent controls and an immediate rent freeze have been called for by politicians in Cork following the publication of the latest Daft.ie rental report.
Rents have risen by 5.5% in Cork city in the last year, while they’ve risen by 9.6% in the county.
The largest increases in rent is seen in the cost of one-bedroom apartments, which have increased by 10% in the city to €1,070 in the city, and are up 12.1% in the county at a cost of €727.
The average rent in Cork city is now €1,372, while it’s €1,031 in the county.
Meanwhile, to rent a room in Cork city centre it now costs €518 for a single room - up 10.9%, and €603 for a double room - up 11.3%. It’s about €50 cheaper in the suburbs for each type of room, but single room rental costs have still increased by 12.8%.
Solidarity TD Mick Barry has called for drastic rent controls similar to current proposals awaiting approval in Berlin. It could see rents frozen there from January in the wake of mass housing protests in the city.
“If rents can be frozen for five years in Berlin I do not see why they cannot be frozen for five years in Ireland too. If experts are saying now that rents may stay sky-high for another 10 years then rent freezes or rent cuts are precisely the kind of bold policy we need to be looking at."
"Drastic rent controls alongside a very big programme of social and affordable house building by the state are the way to go now,” Deputy Barry said.
Meanwhile, Sinn Féin councillor and Cork North Central by-election candidate Thomas Gould condemned both Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil’s handling of the sector.
“Extortionate rents are pushing so many families in our city to the brink of homelessness. We need action now. I am calling for an immediate emergency rent freeze. Existing tenancies should have their rents frozen at their current levels,” he said.
“This is continuing because we have parties in power who are doing nothing. We have to arrest this problem and we have to deliver solutions for renters. Of course, building public housing on a massive scale is the ultimate answer,” Cllr Gould added.