A quarter of small landlords are likely or very likely to sell their rental properties in the next five years because they are not making enough money from rental income, according to new research from the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB).
The findings from the organisation’s Rental Sector Survey were outlined to the Oireachtas housing committee this week.
The survey revealed that the rental market in Ireland has shrunk by 43,599 homes in the last five years.
There were 319,822 tenancies registered with the RTB in 2016 but it is estimated that this fell to 276,223 last year. This is an estimated figure due to changes in registering tenancies last year, which means they now have to be logged each year.
Of the 500 small landlords who took part in the survey, 15% said they are likely to leave the rental market in the next 12 months.
Some 60% of landlords who have already sold their properties said they no longer want to be a landlord and over a third said it was because of the “regulatory” environment for landlords.
A quarter said it was because their tenants were problematic or “too much hassle”.
A further quarter of 100 former landlords, who have left the rental sector and took part in the survey, said that the tax on rental income is too high. Half of these sold up as renting out the property was “not profitable”.
Just over 70% of landlords said they are unlikely to sell over the next year and 18% want to sell in the next two years.
While the vast majority of landlords said they have a good relationship with their tenants, 3% said they had a negative relationship.
Half of these landlords said it was because the tenant did not pay rent on time and 35% said it was due to “too many maintenance requests.”
The sale of a property is one reason that renters can be asked to leave their home and there is concern over the departure of landlords from the market and the impact on supply amid a housing crisis.
Earlier this month, housing charity Threshold highlighted how 1,384 renters sought their help between July and September after they got a notice of termination from their landlord.
Some 60% said the notice was issued because the landlord intended to sell.