Advice for renters whose tenancies are affected by COVID-19 measures
- Government measures
- COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment
- Rent Supplement
- Direct engagement with your landlord
- Contact Threshold
A number of legislative measures to support tenants during the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic have been passed in the Dáil.
These measures include a moratorium or blanket ban on tenancy terminations and rent increases.
- Any rent increase which was to take effect during the emergency period will not take effect until after the moratorium ends
- Any Notice Of Termination that was to take effect during the emergency period will not take effect until after the moratorium ends and any outstanding notice expires.
The moratorium, which has been in place since 27th March 2020 will end this weekend and, from 2nd August 2020 whilst a number of amendments have been proposed, we do not currently have the finalised details of these changes and recommed therefore that you check back here from Tuesday 4th August 2020 onwards for updates.
What to do if your tenancy has been affected by COVID-19 measures
From 13th March 2020 if you are employed or self employed and have lost your job as a result of COVID-19 measures, we would urge you to apply for the COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment, if you have not already done so.
You can apply for the payment if you are aged between 18 and 66 and have lost employment due to the COVID-19 restrictions. Students, non-EEA nationals and part-time workers can apply for the payment.
The payment is €350 per week and will be paid up to the August 10th 2020 Click here for more information. To apply for the payment, you will need to fill in a form which you can access by clicking here where you will also get details on how to submit it.
From 29th June the Pandemic Unemployment Payment is paid at two rates, aligned to prior earnings.
- For those whose prior employment earnings were €200 per week or higher (about 75% of recipients), the rate remains at €350 per week;
- For those whose prior employment earnings were up to €199.99 per week (about 25% of recipients), the rate is €203 per week - the primary rate of payment of the Jobseeker’s Benefit scheme.
(Updated June 22nd 2020)
If you are working but have been put on reduced hours then you may apply for Short Time Work Support find out more by clicking here.
If you have lost your job or had your working hours reduced we would also recommend applying for rent supplement, which is a means-tested payment.
You will need to apply to the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection (DEASP) for this, and depending on where you live, you may have to do this through your local INTREO office or remotely through a centralised rent unit.
The latest Rent Supplement forms are available in both word and pdf formats here
There is currently a high demand for social welfare services, so you may experience difficulties in getting through.
HAP Tenancies and changes in financial circumstances as a result of Covid-19
If you are renting your home and in receipt of HAP (housing assistance payment) and your experience a change in financial circumstances as a result of COVID-19, please contact the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection (DEASP) and apply for the relevant income supports at mywelfare.ie;
During the Covid-19 measures and following the submission of DEASP documentation, any differential rent arrears that accumulate will be re-assessed and rectified, as appropriate, by your local authority in due course– this will not affect your HAP payment to your landlord.
One Parent Families and Child Maintenance payments
There may be situations where a One Parent Family recipient is no longer receiving maintenance for their child because the other parent has lost their job due to Covid-19 pandemic.
In these cases, the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection advises that the One Parent Family recipient should contact their local Intreo Centre and provide it with a letter (from the recipient) stating that they are no longer receiving the maintenance payment from the other parent.
The Department will then revise their One Parent Family payment on that basis for a period of 12 weeks. After that period their means may be re-assessed at that stage following a review.
Victims of domestic violence
Victims of domestic violence can now get immediate access to rent supplement for a 3 month period to ensure that they are not prevented from leaving their home because of financial concerns.
The usual means test will not apply for this three month period. The process will work based on referrals from Tusla-funded services; referrals from An Garda Síochána and the HSE will also be possible.
After the three-month period, a further three-month extension may be provided, subject to the usual rent supplement means assessment.
After six months, if the tenant has a long term housing need, they can apply to their local housing authority for social housing supports and, if eligible, will be able to access HAP.
(Updated June 15th 2020)
If you have not already done so, you should contact your landlord or their agent and explain your circumstances and see if a temporary solution can be found, such as reduced rent payments.
Tenancies are being impacted by the current pandemic in a number of different ways. Making rent payments is not the only difficulty being faced by renters: those living in house-shares are also being impacted by self-isolation and social distancing requirements.
Do not hesitate to contact Threshold if you need advice, need our help in contacting your landlord to protect your tenancy or engaging with DEASP.
COVID Tracker is a free and easy-to-use mobile phone app that can:
- alert you if you have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for coronavirus
- advise you on what to do to protect yourself and others
- alert other app users that you were in close contact with, if you test positive for coronavirus
Go to the COVID Tracker app website
Download the app