DONEGAL County Council says it is investigating alleged tenancy breaches following claims that some of its homes are being sub-let on Airbnb.
According to west Donegal Independent Micheal Cholm MacGiolla Easbuig between 50 and 100 social housing properties in the county are being advertised on the popular holiday rental site.
Councillor MacGiolla Easbuig said that he knew of a number of apartments that had been reclaimed from unscrupulous tenants by the local authority. But the practice is continuing, he added.
“We have people in Donegal who are homeless and it angers me as it does many others, especially those on a waiting list or who are homeless, to see some homes empty and people think it is okay to rent them out,
Airbnb them or hold on to them because they are paying a small amount of rent,” he said.
A spokesperson for Donegal County Council said that while the local authority could not comment on live cases, it is reviewing up multiple complaints of tenancy abuse.
“The council is responsible for over 5,000 housing units and believe that the vast majority of tenants comply with the conditions of their tenancy agreement,” they said.
“However the council takes all reports of breach of tenancy seriously including abandonment’s, sub-letting or the illegal occupation after the legal tenant has moved out or died.
“Whilst such cases are low in the county, all reports are fully investigated by the local Housing Office to ensure compliance with the tenancy agreements and the efficient use of the available housing stock.
“The council is not in a position to discuss ongoing investigations in this area, but it does review approximately ten complaints of possible breaches per year.”
Donegal County Council added that if anyone suspects a property is not being used by the legal tenant or is vacant, they should bring it to the attention of their local Housing Office so matters can be fully investigated.
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