NEW REGULATIONS ON the standards of residential rental accomodation that come into effect today will see an end to bedsits. The new laws effectively ban shared bathrooms and landlord-controlled heating systems on rented properties.
The Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland (SCSI) said today that the four year grace period for the implementation of the law has now expired and this means that rental properties must be upgraded to meet the new standards.
Rental properties are now required to have separate bathrooms, independently controlled heating appliances, adequate food preparation and storage facilities and access to laundry facilities.
The SCSI said that the purpose of the housing regulations is to improve living conditions, particularly for those renting pre-1963 units.
Siobhan O’Dwyer, Chair of the Property and Facilities Management Professional Group of the SCSI said that the average cost of upgrading units to the required standards was likely to vary, but significant expenditure could be envisaged.
She recommended that tenants or landlords with questions should contact their local authority or the Department of Environment, Community and Local Government for further information on the new standards.
The penalties for non-compliance with the regulations are a fine of €5,000 or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or both, and the fine for each day of a continuing offence is €400.
“Clearly it is in landlord’s interests to ensure their rental accommodation meets the new standards,” O’Dwyer said.