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Low standards in private rented sector

I am compelled to respond to the disingenuous letter from Stephen Faughnan (May 16) claiming that most tenants in the private rental sector are happy with landlords.

I returned from overseas to Ireland in 2003 and was appalled at what I was offered in rental accommodation in Dublin. The low standard of rentals in Ireland is a topic of much discussion amongst the European community here who come from countries where such conditions would be unacceptable.

As for native renters, if poor conditions are widespread in the rental market, where is the incentive to complain against the norm, especially if what few laws that exist to protect the tenant are toothless?

The rentals I was offered in Cork were little better.

I have been lucky in that with persistence I have found residences that were acceptable, but even with these higher grade rentals in many cases the landlord’s noblesse oblige attitude means the tenant is at the mercy of the landlord’s whims with regard to the proper maintenance of the property. I suspect that the root of such inequity may be found in the legacy of the landlord/tenant model of our colonial past.

I did not see the Prime Time programme but I am pleased that attention is finally being brought to the issue.

Finn O’Gorman

St Luke’s



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