Rent prices in Westmeath continue to rise sharply

Rents in Westmeath were 12.7 per cent higher in Westmeath in the second quarter of 2016, according to the latest quarterly Rental Report by Daft.ie

The average rent for the county now stands at €700, up 33 per cent from the lowest point.

Nationally, rents rose by an average of 3.9 per cent in the second quarter of the year. This is the largest three-month increase in rents since early 2007 and means that, at €1,037 in the second quarter, the average monthly rent nationwide is at its highest level on record.

The report painted a similar picture for the entire country. In Dublin, the annual rate of inflation in rents, in the year to June 2016, was 11.1 per cent, its highest since late 2014. Rents in the capital are now 5.2 per cent higher than their previous peak in early 2008.

For the fourth quarter in a row, the highest rate of inflation country-wide was in Cork city, where rents rose by 18 per cent in 12 months. Rents in Galway are 13.9 per cent higher than a year previously, while rents in Limerick have risen 15.5 per cent in the same period. In Waterford city, rents have risen by 13.3 per cent in 12 months, while outside the major cities, the increase has been 9.7 per cent.

There were a little more than 3,600 properties available to rent nationwide on August 1, an increase on the 3,100 available in May. However, rental listings rise every year ahead of the academic year and the August figure is the lowest on record for the time of year in question. In comparison, two years previously, on August 1, 2014, there were almost 6,800 properties listed nationwide.

Commenting on the report, Ronan Lyons, economist at TCD and author of the Daft Report, said: “Ahead of a new academic year, the latest figures highlight the severe shortage of accommodation for students. While a large number of purpose-built student apartments are either being built or are planned, these will take time to come on stream and will only cater for those on higher incomes. The majority of students will face tough choices about where to study and where to live.”

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