Student rents on the rise

It’s official - student rents are continuing to rise in Westmeath. Rent prices in Westmeath have increased by 5.8 per cent in the past year, according to the latest rent report from property website Daft.ie

The figures will be of particular concern to students starting out or returning to Athlone Institiute of Technology in the coming weeks.

Rent for a single room in Athlone has jumped by 12 per cent since last year. The average rent is now €233 per month, while a double room will set a student back €256 per month. Total rent for a five-bedroom house in Athlone has risen by a massive 23 per cent to €1,011 a month.

On average, a house in Westmeath will now set renters back €601 per month.

The upward trend in rent prices is evident across the Midlands, with rents increasing by 3.4 per cent in Longford, 5 per cent in Offaly, and 6.4 per cent in Laois in the past year. However Roscommon only reported a very slight increase of 0.2 per cent in the past year.

Nationally, rents were 10.8 per cent higher on average in the second quarter of 2014 than a year previously.

Students Unions across the country are concerned at the leap in rent prices revealed in the report.

“Average rent across Ireland has increased from €825 to €915 for a given property over the past year - or close to 11 per cent, the steepest jump since 2007,” commented TCD Students Union president Domhnall McGlacken-Byrne.

“There is a student profile currently growing in number, contributing further to the demand-supply mismatch: students incoming from overseas. This added influx is contrasted by a fall in the absolute number of available properties in Ireland... Meanwhile, the maintenance grant has stayed static or dwindled.”

AIT Students Union put out a call last week for local landlords to supply accommodation for students, as demand is currently exceeding supply. Prospective landlords can contact the Students Union at (090 ) 6468067 or contact the accommodation office directly on [email protected].

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