Am I renting in a Rent Pressure Zone?
Please note that the law in relation to rent increases has been amended temporarily to protect tenants during the COVID-19 crisis. From Friday 27th March 2020 your landlord cannot increase your rent during a three month emergency period until the end of June. If you are facing rent increase during this time contact Threshold immediately for advice. Click here for more on the new measures covering rent inceases and notices of termination.
Rent Pressure Zone Rules
A rent pressure zone is an area where annual rent increases have been at 7% or more in four of the last six quarters and where the rent levels are already above the national average and in these areas, rent increases will be capped at 4% per annum over a three- year period.
Below are details of the rent pressure zones based on local electoral areas (LEAs)
- Dublin: Dublin City, Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown, Fingal and South Dublin County Council)
- Cork: Cork City Council local authority area, Douglas, Ballincollig, Carrigaline, Passage West, Cobh
- Meath: Slane, Julianstown, Duleek, Laytown, Bettystown, Ashbourne, Dunboyne, Dunshaughlin, Ratoath and Navan
- Kildare: Naas, Sallins, Celbridge, Leixlip, Rathangan, Kildare, Newbridge, Maynooth
- Wicklow: Bray, Enniskerry, Wicklow
- Galway City
- Louth: Drogheda
- Wicklow: Greystones
- Limerick: Limerick City East
New Rent Pressure Zones, as of July 2019, are as follows
Ardee, Arklow, Athenry-Oranmore, Athlone (Westmeath side), Dundalk-Carlingford and Dundalk-South, Fermoy, Gorey, Gort-Kinvara, Graiguecullen-Portarlington, Kells, Kilkenny, Limerick City North and west, Midleton, Portlaoise, Trim, Waterford City East and Waterford City South
New Rent Pressure Zones, as of September 2019, are as follows
- Macroom - this covers areas such as Millstreet, Ballyvourney, Coachford, Cloughduv, Aherla, Lissarda, Crookstown, Canovee, Dripsey, Berrings, Clondrohid, Kilmurry, Ovens, Donoughmore, Farnanes, Inchigeelagh, Crossbarry
- Carlow town and the nearby surrounding areas of Ballinacarrig, Johnstown and Burton Hall
New Rent Pressure Zones, as of 18th December 2019, are as follows
- Cork: Cobh
- Wicklow: Baltinglass
- Kilkenny: Piltown
- Sligo: Sligo-Strandhill
New Rent Pressure Zones, as of April 22nd 2020, are as follows
- Cork: Mallow
- Kerry: Killarney
- Kildare: Athy
- Westmeath: Tullamore and Mullingar
The normal rules in relation to rent reviews will continue to apply outside of the designated rent pressure zones.
The Rent Pressure Zone rules will not apply where:
The property has not been let in the previous two years or where there has been a substantial change in the nature of the property and
Where the rent to be set after the change, it would, by virtue of that change be different to the market rent for that tenancy at the time it was set.
This has caused some confusion with tenancies being ended on the grounds of renovation/refurbishment in the belief that this will justify an exemption to the RPZ rules. The RTB have issued guidelines on this which you can access by clicking here. Whilst broadly welcoming the guidelines Threshold has called for a statutory definition to be provide so that landlords and tenants are clear on what are minimum standards issues, renovation and refurbishment issues and what a substantial change in the nature of the property constitutes.
Rent reviews in an existing tenancy on or before 24th December 2016
If your landlord has issued a valid notice prior to the commencement date for your area, the normal rules apply and not the new rules. The new rules will only come into effect when your rent can next be reviewed-this is currently at least 24 months from either the start of the tenancy or from the date of when you were notified in writing of your last review. Following this rent reviews can take place every 12 months over a three-year period.
Rent Reviews in a tenancy which commences after 24th December 2016
For a new tenancy that started on or after the 24th December 2016 the rent can be reviewed every 12 months.
Moving into a rented property
The new rules also apply if you are moving into a new tenancy located within a rent pressure zone. In the setting of the initial rent, it cannot be above market rent and the landlord is required to give you written information outlining the amount of rent and date it was last set under a tenancy for the dwelling and a statement as to how the rent set under the tenancy of the dwelling has been calculated having regard to the rent pressure zone formula.
If you have not been given this, you can use the letter attached to request this and if not provided you can refer a dispute to the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB)
After 12 months the rent can be reviewed in accordance with the Rent Pressure Zone rules.
To find out how much your rent can be increased go to the RTB rent calculator.