September 26, 2020
Business News Property

Pandemic brings some rent relief for hard-pressed Wicklow tenants

Tenants in Wicklow are forking out slightly less in monthly rents because of the pandemic, a new survey reveals.

They are now paying an average of €1,277 a month in rent, down €11 (1.7%) from the €1,298 recorded in the last three months of the year.

The findings are contained in the latest report by the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) Rent Index Series.

The RTB analysis shows the annual growth rate of rent amounts declined significantly compared to the period prior to the lockdown. While the annual growth rate in March was over 3%, by April this had fallen to 0.4%, and it declined again in May to 0.1%. By June, the annual growth rate had turned negative with prices falling by 3.3% compared to the same month the previous year.

There was also a significant decline in the number of tenancies registered with the RTB between March and April. In March there were over 7,000 registrations, but this has fallen to just 4,000 in April. The RTB said the figure also “remained subdued” in May.

Commenting on the findings of the report, Conor O’Toole, Senior Research Officer at the Economic and Social Research Institute, said: “The spread of Covid-19 and the resulting lockdown is likely to impact all facets of the Irish economy. This includes prices in the rental market which have been rising rapidly in recent years due to excess demand and strong economic growth.

“This report provides a clear insight at the present juncture. With the economic situation relating to the pandemic rapidly evolving, it is difficult to assess the trajectory of prices in the short to medium term. However, it is very likely they will closely mirror developments in incomes and unemployment of households.”

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