29 October 2010

Regulations to protect people renting properties must be enforced – Fitzgerald

Fine Gael obtains new figures showing that of the 19,800 rental properties inspected in 2009, a staggering 4,306 failed to meet minimum legal standards

Local Fine Gael Senator Frances Fitzgerald has called on the Government to ensure that regulations regarding rental properties are adequately enforced to protect people renting houses and apartments.

Senator Fitzgerald made her comments after new figures obtained by Fine Gael showed the over 4,000 properties inspected in the last year to ensure compliance with regulations failed to meet minimum legal standards. Additionally only 3 landlords were prosecuted in 2009 for failing to comply with these minimum standards.
Speaking on this issue, Senator Fitzgerald said, “Many of my constituents are renting properties and it is absolutely vital that the Government ensures that these tenants are protected and that basic, minimum legal standards are provided by landlords. Whilst I am confident the overwhelming majority of landlords provide good standards in terms of accommodation, the new figures are nonetheless worrying. It basically shows that over 4,000 properties which were inspected last year failed to meet standards yet only 3 landlords were prosecuted.”
“It is important that the Government does not simply introduce regulations to protect tenants but then fail to ensure that standards are adhered to. Many people are struggling to make ends meet and to pay rent in these difficult economic times. They should at least be able to expect that the Government will do everything in its powers to protect them from substandard accommodation,” concluded Senator Fitzgerald.