Wicklow tenants forking out highest rents in country outside Dublin
Tenants in Wicklow are now paying more than €1,400 a month in rents – the highest in the country outside of Dublin, new figures reveal.
Statstics provided by Focus Ireland also reveal there were 24 people in homeless emergency accommodation in Wicklow over the Christmas period.
The housing and homeless agency also said there are now 2,477 families across Wicklow who are on the social housing list, while the average rent in the county has soared by 28% since 2016.
Commenting on the figures, Focus Ireland South-East Manager David Niblock urged voters to make concerns over the housing crisis heard at the ballot box when they vote in Saturday’s General Election.
A recent ESRI survey found up to 35,000 new homes need to be built every year in Ireland just to keep up with demand, of which at least 10,000 of these need to be social houses. A total of 165 social homes were built in Wicklow in the first nine months of 2019.
Mr Niblock said: “Housing and homelessness have become major themes of the current general election. There are few people in Ireland who have not been affected by rapidly rising rent prices, a shortage of affordable housing and lengthy social housing lists. However, in all the discussion, it can be too easy to lose sight of the fact that this national crisis is having serious local consequences.
He added: “The housing crisis is a problem locally and nationally, and we need to make our concerns clear by voting on the issue. If housing and homelessness are priorities for you, I would urge you to make that clear to every candidate or canvasser you meet over the next few days and when the next government forms. Ask our politicians clearly and repeatedly how they will fix this crisis. How many houses they will build? What actions will they take to help our homeless young people and families?
“We need to make it known that we will not accept an Ireland where almost 4,000 children have no stable home to grow up in. As a country, we can do better. Locally, we need to make our voices heard to canvassers and politicians on the doorsteps.”