Tuesday, 14 May 2019
Residential Tenancies (Amendment) (No. 2) Bill 2018: Second Stage
Colm Burke (Fine Gael)
I thank the Minister for the work that he is doing. Dealing with the housing market is a major challenge. The big change that we have seen is the increase in employment. We have many more people coming into the country than ever before. Instead of leaving the country, people are staying here. As a result, we have higher demand for accommodation. The demand for housing poses major challenges in all of the cities throughout the country. It is important that we get a balance. I am a legal practitioner and come across issues. In fairness, as other speakers have said, there are landlords who have provided substandard accommodation, have not been putting in the work to make sure that it is adequate, and have been using it as a means to make the maximum amount of money. The vast majority of landlords are running a business and want to provide good, satisfactory accommodation for their tenants because their tenants are their customers. I was speaking to a landlord in recent days about the number of tenants who have consistently referred new people to the landlord. They are only being referred because, over the years, the landlord has provided very good accommodation.
I am not defending instances where there has been abuse of the system but there is an issue where landlords are dealing with difficult circumstances.