Worries grow as rental market gets smaller

A MICA campaigner has carried out research analysing the rental market in Donegal and as of last week, only 33 rental properties were available for rent in Donegal on
Majority of these properties were in the Letterkenny area (26) while two were available in Ballybofey, one in Dungloe, two in Dunfanaghy, one in Glenties and one in Buncrana.
The scarcity of rental properties is causing great concern for families who have to move out of their homes while repair work or demolition is ongoing.
Affected homeowners have been granted €15,000 for rental accommodation under the new scheme, however, based on some of the rental prices, this figure will just about cover one year of rent.
Four-bedroom houses  are for rent for between €1,000 and €1,650 a month while a three-bedroom house in Letterkenny will cost between €800 and €1,000.
A two-bed apartment in Ballybofey is listed for €900 a month while a four-bedroom house in Ballybofey is listed for €1,650.
The cheapest property available is a studio apartment in Dunfanaghy listed at €430 followed by a one-bedroom apartment in Letterkenny for €560 a month.
Only one house is available to rent in Inishowen which is the area worst affected by mica. The three bedroom house in Buncrana is €950 a month.
Leading campaigner Paddy Diver said the lack of properties suitable for families and the rising cost of rent was leaving mica affected families with nowhere to go while their homes are being repaired.
Last week, the Donegal News reported that positive talks are ongoing with an investor who is hoping to provide up to 60 log cabins in Inishowen but in order to accommodate majority of families, this project would need to be repeated in towns across the county.
Mr Diver said campaigners were trying to think “outside the box”.
“The one thing the Minister for Housing should never let happen is a housing crisis and that is what is happening here.
“In Dublin, Cork and Galway there is a rent pressure zone on housing crisis areas but there is no zone in Donegal? There are no properties available.
“The price of rent is going through the roof. I have a rental property but I don’t have the heart to put up the price. Some of the prices are at a scandalous rate.
“Other properties that are cheaper are not suitable for families so we need to think outside the box,” said Mr Diver.

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