Monday, 29 March 2021
Residential Tenancies Bill 2021: Committee and Remaining Stages
I want to highlight the prohibition of rent increases is important and the fact that people cannot increase rent at this time. We are coming into the summer and where I live, there are individuals who see dollar signs and think about hoisting people out of houses in May for June, July and August in order to charge ridiculous rents. We see it happening all over north Clare and it has led to a major lack of housing availability. It is really important to emphasise that this applies to tenants who have been affected by Covid-19. We are hoping Covid-19 will not be an issue in December. Senator Craughwell knows as well as I do the slating the Minister would get if he rowed back on a promise. That is a very plain reason to include the clause for July and to extend it if required. If the Minister stated that he made a mistake and had to row back on the December provision, we know it would go down like a lead balloon.
It is important nonetheless that we are doing this for tenants, and it is great we had the wherewithal at the beginning to extend these provisions. That made a significant difference to people. We have much work still to do in respect of tenancies, tenancy agreements, evictions and notice periods of one month or even four months when work is to be done on a house and somebody is going to pay double the current rent. There is much yet to be covered but I support the Bill.