The Revenue Commissioners could force tenants to pay back the money if they claim the rent tax credit but their landlord fails to register their tenancy.
These were some of the issues that Dublin city councillors discussed at their March monthly meeting on Monday.
Landlords can legally add charges, but which charges are allowed is disputed. And it’s a practice that leaves tenants vulnerable to faster-growing payments even if, on paper, the rents have only risen in line with rent controls.
The issue of determination orders being ignored “could undermine the credibility of the board”, say the minutes of an RTB board meeting in 2021.
Since the RTB won’t hear a case unless it knows the landlord’s full name, his tenants struggled to get their complaints about him heard.
“We are going to be the new homeless,” says one. “I hope I’m wrong but I don’t see too many opportunities.”
Official figures show an small uptick in landlords telling the RTB they were claiming an exemption from rent-cap rules because their properties hadn’t been rented for a while, or ever. But the totals are still small.
People who have moved to Dublin from other countries are among the most vulnerable tenants in the city, more likely to be renters, to live in overcrowded apartments, and to end up homeless.
Homelessness is likely to increase for the rest of this year, says Mike Allen, director of advocacy with Focus Ireland.
During marathon meetings last week about the next city development plan, councillors voted to keep in local policies in the draft that likely clash with national guidelines.