Rents up 36% since 2011 as car insurance also soars

The costs of rents and car insurance are likely to be thrust back into the political spotlight as official figures showed that these were the only two items in the cost-of-living basket that have continued to soar.

The costs of renting reached their highest levels in March since records began, and have risen for each of the past three months despite the introduction of the Government’s new rent controls late last year. Rents are now 36% more expensive than December 2011.

“This reflects the ongoing mismatch between supply and demand in the residential property market,” said Investec Ireland chief economist Philip O’Sullivan.

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin said in the Dáil earlier this week that “urgent action” was required to control the housing crisis.

Overall, the Consumer Price Index showed prices across the CSO’s basket of goods and services rose only 0.4% in the month, and that prices have dropped 0.3% from March 2015.

Some food items fell as much as 5% in the past year; transport costs fell by almost 6%; while clothing and footwear and household utility bills also dropped.

The high costs of rents and other items in the Irish economy featured during the election campaign. Analysts say that with so few new homes being built that rents will likely continue to rise.

Meanwhile, the costs of car insurance continued to surge — premiums were up 3.9% in March alone — which means car insurance is almost 33% higher than a year ago.

Consumer advocacy groups have long argued that such price hikes are unacceptable because drivers by law are required to buy insurance. Insurers claim the costs of doing business in Ireland are exceptionally high.


Triathlete Carolyn Hayes is flat out. Since October 2018, she’s literally been racing around the world.On the treble: Triathlete Carolyn Hayes goes flat out to win a place in the Olympics

Children starting or going back to school is a reminder of how we all need an energy boost when sitting at a desk for hours, no matter what our age.Energy fix: Top 8 snacks for children

A sommelier shares her top tips.The dos and don’ts of serving wine – you just might have been doing it all wrong

It’s that time of year again; the long summer days are numbered, summer’s lease is all too short as she takes her last few breaths.Learning Points: Top tips on coping with back to school stress for you and the kids

More From The Irish Examiner