Homeless charity reports that lack of available housing for those facing eviction.

Homeless charity reports that lack of available housing for those facing eviction.
Image by Q K from Pixabay

Tomorrow, no-fault evictions will be made legal again, resulting in thousands of active eviction notices.

In a worrying sign of the deepening housing crisis, Simon Community has announced that the number of available rental properties for people facing eviction is at its lowest levels ever.

With the eviction moratorium set to expire tomorrow, a new report by the charity Locked Out of the Market sheds light on the current available rental properties. This comes at a critical time when numerous tenants are expected to face evictions.

According to the March report, there were only 672 rental properties available in 16 areas during the survey period. This decreased 11%, or 85 properties, from the earlier low of 757 in December.

The situation is dire for those experiencing homelessness, as only 29 homes available to rent fulfil the criteria to receive HAP (Housing Assistance Payments) support from the government. In his statement, Wayne Stanley, executive director at Simon Communities of Ireland, observed that this outcome is "particularly stark".

Mr Stanley emphasized that when taking into consideration the people in need of housing, the private rental market is no longer a viable option. Long-term homelessness has been an increasingly significant issue as a result of this situation, with individuals & families expending excessive money to get out of or prevent homelessness.

We urge the Government to reverse its decision and extend the eviction ban. Doing so would give them more time to adequately address this situation before making a final call.

Given the available time, it is recommended to introduce tenants in situ policy and enact Simon Bill. This measure will protect those liable to eviction and resulting homelessness, mainly families and individuals renting their accommodation.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar affirmed the effectiveness of the Government's housing policy. He stated: “An additional 2,000 HAP tenancies have been created this year alone, providing people in need of social housing with secure accommodation.”

Tension was high in the Dail yesterday as the subject of housing was discussed. Sinn Fein's Pearse Doherty argued that lifting the ban at the end of March would lead to thousands becoming homeless.

He emphatically declared that everyone on the other side of the room had made conscious choices to cause harm and suffering.