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Students face accommodation squeeze

Tuesday, August 19 10:21:39

There are 40pc fewer properties available for students to rent this year compared to the same time last year, with the problem especially acute in Dublin, according to a report from this morning.

It found that the national average rent has risen from 825 to 925 over the same period - an increase of over 10pc.

Rents in Dublin have increased the most - by more than 15pc year-on-year.

Rents in Cork City have gone up by just 7.4pc, in Galway by 6.7pc and in Limerick by 6.3pc. economist Ronan Lyons has said the Government needs to look at ways to reduce the cost of construction and of relaxing housing regulations in order to alleviate the current shortage of accommodation.

Speaking on RTE's Morning Ireland, Mr Lyons said two years ago there would have been 2,000 properties to choose from in the Dublin commuter counties, and now there are fewer than 600.

Mr Lyons said rents have risen by more than a quarter in Dublin in the past two years and by 10pc in other cities.

He said the Government needs to relax restrictions on bedsits and car parking spaces.

Mr Lyons said if the situation is addressed there could be serious long-term consequences.

"If people are put off choosing the course they want to do because it's too expensive to rent in Dublin, they end up with a different set of skills than they otherwise would have got; that has a long-run effect.

"If people are put off moving to Dublin even though they have a job offer but they can't find decent quality accommodation for the same rent that they'd be able to rent somewhere else in Europe. That has an impact on the real economy in Ireland.

"So this is a very real problem for the economy both from the education point of view and from the competitiveness point of view."

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