22 criminal convictions this year sends strong message that rogue landlords will not be tolerated – Donohoe

10th April, 2013


Fine Gael Dublin Central Deputy, Paschal Donohoe, has said news that the Private Residential Tenancy Board (PRTB) has obtained 22 criminal convictions against landlords for non-registration of tenancies since the beginning of the year will send a strong message to other who feel they can get away with not registering their properties.

“The PRTB has secured 22 criminal convictions, as well as €107,550 in fines and legal costs since the beginning of 2013 in attempting to get to grips with rogue landlords who feel they are above the law and are not compelled to play by the rules. In the past two weeks, 10 convictions were secured against five landlords with fines of €19,500 in addition to costs amounting to €25,000 being imposed.

“Despite numerous letters being issued to unregistered landlords by the PRTB informing them of their obligations under the law, many still desist from paying the fee. This is unfathomable as each of these tenancies could be registered for a little as €90 for as long as four years, leading us to believe that the cost of registration is not the hindering factor.

“A number of landlords appeared before the courts today charged with non-registration of their tenancies and what is of serious concern is the fact that they all had tenants who are in receipt of rent supplement payments from the Department of Social Protection. For too long, we have seen some landlords shirk their duties, leave tenants to live in substandard conditions and simply collect their money every month as if their responsibilities extend no further. Well, that time has passed.

“Whether the reason for non-payment amounts to greed, forgetfulness or whatever, landlords need to be mindful of the fact that they are statutorily obliged to register their tenancies. The PRTB is doing stellar work in informing landlords of their duties but some continue to ignore the warnings. I believe that these convictions will help get the message out there that these people will be caught and that there is a price to pay.

“The penalty for failing to comply with a notice is a hefty fines or a prison sentence. It does not make sense for landlords to attempt to run the risk of non-payment for what is a relatively moderate sum. The PRTB is unrelenting in this battle and landlords who do not comply with the law will be pursued. Local Authorities and the Department of Social Protection are co-operating with the Board to help identify rogue landlords and give tenants the protection they really need.”