Rent pressure zones are set to be extended to the end of 2021, the government has confirmed.
Simon Coveney told the Dail today that Cabinet had made the decision to extend the legislation and also makes changes to how the qualification criteria for how rent pressure zones are calculated.
Rent pressure zones (RPZ) legislation was introduced in December 2016 as a means of controlling spiralling rents.
The laws were due to expire later this year.
Under the rules, rent can only be increased by up to 4% a year in designated RPZ areas.
Mr Coveney said the criteria changes were needed “to separate Dublin from the rest of the country because rents are much so higher in Dublin”.
“Therefore, one of the qualification criteria of having to be over the national average is a criteria that needs to change for outside of Dublin,” he said.
The Tanaiste made the announcement in response to a query from Green party deputy leader Catherine Martin.
In a statement, Ms Martin said the changes would be a significant relief to those in rented accommodation who were facing substantial rent hikes if the laws lapsed, but she said it was not a long term fix to rising rents.
“While the extension to 2021 will be welcome for many, it is still a short term solution and shows little ambition for our rental communities,” she said.
“With growing numbers in long-term rental situations we need long-term solutions to affordability and security. Ad hoc approaches simply won’t suffice.”
Rent Pressure Zones are located in parts of the country where rents are highest and rising, and where households have the greatest difficulty finding accommodation they can afford.
Five local authority areas and 18 local electoral areas have been designated as RPZs.
Dublin city council, Newbridge, Co Kildare, Cobh, Co Cork, Asbourne Co Meath and Galway city council are among the areas.
Navan in Co Meath and Limerick City East were added to the list most recently.
- Press Association