Less than 5% of rental properties were built in last 10 years

Less than 5 per cent of the State’s rental properties were built in the last 10 years, according to a new report by Central Statistics Office (CSO).

In contrast, about 45 per cent were built during the Celtic Tiger era (between 2001 and 2010).

The finding illustrates the sharp drop-off in building rates that occurred after the 2008 financial crisis, which preceded the current supply shortfall.

Property website said there were just 1,460 homes to rent on its website as of November 1st last, the lowest number since its data series began in 2006. This included just 820 in Dublin.

The CSO’s Rental Sector in Ireland 2021 report, developed in collaboration with the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) and the Department of Housing, noted that a “very small proportion” of rental properties were built in the period after 2011. However this grew from 1.2 per cent in 2017 to 4.9 per cent in 2021, reflecting the recent acceleration in construction.

Separately the report found that one in three rental properties were apartments. The total floor area of rental properties is lowest in Dublin, particularly in the inner city.

The report also examined the financial profile of landlords, finding more than half (50.5 per cent) had a rental income of less than €10,000. Just over 1 per cent received more than €100,000 in rental income. The proportion of landlords under the age of 45 decreased from 35 per cent in 2017 to just over 24 per cent in 2021.

Disposable income

Rent as a proportion of total disposable income was found to be the highest for tenants living in Dublin.

More than a third of tenants (36.1 per cent) living in Dublin City spent more than 35 per cent of their disposable income on rent in 2019, followed by Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown (35.7 per cent), Fingal (34 per cent), South Dublin (32.3 per cent) and Wicklow (30.5 per cent). In contrast, only 13 per cent of tenants in Leitrim spent over 35 per cent of their disposable income on rent.

Almost three-quarters (71 per cent ) of tenants have employee income as their primary source of income while social welfare (excluding pensions) is the next highest primary income source for tenants (20.6 per cent).

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