Fianna Fáil’s Housing Spokesperson Barry Cowen TD has said that urgent action is needed to cool the rental market as figures from the Central Statistics Office, and the Consumer Price Index, show that there have been 50 consecutive months of increases.

“The annual rate of growth is currently 8.8%. Over the past three years, this rate has remained broadly constant, hovering between 8 and 11 % every year.”

“These types of increases are really putting significant financial pressure on people who can’t take any more. Students looking for a place to stay during term, people starting out in their careers on below-average salaries, and rent allowance recipients,” said the Offaly Fianna Fáil TD.

“Thousands upon thousands of people are being priced out of the market, especially in major urban areas.”

“More and more of a person’s income is being swallowed up by rent. It’s not sustainable in the long term,” added Cowen.

“In the last few weeks, I’ve met people who are commuting from midland counties to Dublin or Galway because the rents being charged are just too high to justify paying.”

“Since July 2012, the cumulative increase in the private rental sector was 46%. Over the corresponding period, inflation was just 5%.”

“The housing challenge has been well documented over the past four years. We have an under-supply of housing stock, and an increasing demand.”

“Building more private and social housing, increasing rent allowance thresholds, and empowering our 3rd level institutions to build more affordable student accommodation are all needed, and needed urgently,” concluded Cowen.