DEMAND for rental properties in Carlow far outweighs supply, with only a handful of homes currently available.
Only four houses were available to rent in Carlow town on Daft.ie yesterday, Monday, while just two were available in Tullow.
“Supply is totally outweighing demand,” said Nessa O’Neill of Remax Carlow.
Ms O’Neill recalled posting one three-bed property online in Carlow town, only to remove it a little over a day later before a viewing even took place, when it attracted over 100 email applications and scores of phone calls.
Covid-19 has had a big impact, with professionals looking to move from Dublin because now they can work from home and save a huge amount on what they had been paying in rents. And people who may have rented for several years before buying a house are now renting for longer periods, leading to a reduction in turnover of lets.
When people are applying to view a rental, Ms O’Neill encouraged them to submit references from previous landlords and employers.
There is a desperate need for housing for some families and Ms O’Neill said it was “upsetting” to witness this. Some families with children are in temporary emergency accommodation in B&Bs.
“It’s the worst I have see it in 16 years,” she said. “It’s really hard to deal with it, especially when there are kids involved.”
The demand for properties is not leading to a significant rise in rents, as Carlow is in a designated ‘rent pressure zone’, which means that annual rents can only increase in line with inflation. Ms O’Neill said this was good for tenants, but it had the knock-on effect of deterring investors from buying in Carlow.
It was a different tale for student accommodation in Carlow. There were eight student properties such as apartments and houseshares available on Daft.ie. One landlord told ***The Nationalist*** that it was quiet, with students still unsure about whether they needed to rent locally ahead of the new college year.
The landlord said that student numbers had generally reduced due to Covid-19 and it had taken a month to find students for one property.
Ms O’Neill added that the rental situation was leading to some private owners providing substandard accommodation.
“I have seen it around,” she said. “If a landlord came to us with it, I would turn them away.”