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Taoiseach says Government can only deal with soaring rents 'by supply of new housing'

By Ciara Phelan

Taoiseach Micheal Martin has said the only way the Government can effectively deal with soaring rent costs “is by supply of new housing.”

A recent Daft.ie report revealed rents across the country rose by 12% in comparison to this time last year hitting an average monthly cost of €1,567.

Renting in the capital now costs on average €2,100 per month - jumping by 10% in a year.

Read More: Government leaders agree to pay €400 a month to every home hosting Ukrainian refugees

And shockingly, the property report shows there were only 851 homes available to rent nationally on its website as of May 1.

When asked what the Government can do to help tenants who face paying extortionate rent, Mr Martin said: “New rents are very high, there’s no question about that.

“The situation is, the only way we can effectively deal with this is by supply of new housing and new apartments.

“It’s not an easy answer to give right now but it is the answer and we simply over the last number of years were not building enough houses.

“Supply is the issue and I know it’s a mantra but there’s no getting away from it.”

The Government moved to cap rents rising by 2% per annum but Opposition TD have called for further action given tenants are already paying eye watering prices.

Mr Martin added: “There have been too many objections and too many specifications on the type of housing and politically people have to get real also on the absolute need for all types of housing to be provided from private sector, to social housing, to cost rental and to ensure we have significant investment coming into the country to enable us to get up to far higher levels of construction then we’re currently experiencing.”

He said the State will reach “about 24,600 units in 2022” but that up to 35,000 homes needed to be built every year “to give people the opportunity to afford to buy at a reasonable affordable level but also to rent at an affordable level.”

He said the target was to get 9,000 new social houses built but it would be “challenging with all of the constraints” synch as the cost of materials.

Tanaiste Leo Varadkar said on Thursday the Government anticipated building 10,000 social homes this year.

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