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06 Oct 2022

Just six homes now available for rent in Laois, none in Portlaoise

Just six homes now available for rent in Laois, none in Portlaoise

The housing crisis and rent shortage in Laois continues to worsen this week, with now just six properties on the market.

None of the houses and apartments are in the biggest town of Portlaoise, and one is a large hotel requiring a long term lease agreement.

This Wednesday February 9 all six of the properties are on both leading Irish property websites, Daft.ie and Property.ie.

The cheapest is a one bed apartment in Mountmellick for €900 a month, ranging to €1,300 a month for a three bed house in the village of Ballyroan.

The others are a hotel in Portarlington for €750 a month, a three bed cottage in Mountmellick for €1,200, another in Clonaslee for €950 and a two bed apartment in Portarlington for €1,100.

Laois councillors have slammed the continued housing shortage.

Portlaoise Fine Gael Cllr Thomasina Connell noted at the last monthly council meeting on January 31 that that there were only nine homes to rent in the whole county that day. 

She blamed the not-for-profit Government approved housing agencies for the shortage.  She also said that their homes can never be bought out by council tenants as they remain the property of the agencies, unlike council houses.

"The approved housing bodies are buying them up. These will never be affordable houses because they are all rental houses. We're not going to deliver houses as a county council," she said.  

Cllr Willie Aird added that on that day, January 31, there was only one house to rent in Portlaoise, at €1,200.

He also called out the low income threshold to qualify for a council home in Laois as a "disaster".

"One thing it shows, there is no incentive to go to work. It's a total disaster," he said.

The income threshold to qualify for social housing in Laois is in the lowest bracket, at €25,000 for a couple with no children, and €30,000 for a couple with children.  Laois County Council officially requested a rise in the threshold last April to the department of housing.

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