Reaching A Threshold

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Queue for an apartment viewing in Ringsend, Dublin 4 last year

Via homeless charity Threshold:

We have been dealing with cases of people being charged just simply to view rented accommodation.

One woman who contacted us contacted a letting agency and was told that she could view the property that afternoon – but that she’d have to pay a €500 fee.

Another woman seeking a HAP [Housing Assistance Programme] tenancywas required to pay a €300 deposit to an agency. After being informed that the property was above the HAP limit, the woman could not sign the lease. The agency, however, refused to refund her money.

Anne Marie McNally, of the Soc Dems writes:

“This practice is outrageous and exploitative….The law on extra charges being applied by landlords is in fact very far from clear and needs to be clarified by the government as a matter of urgency.

I have also heard of landlords seeking to charge tenants extra for bin collections and car parking. In some cases,

it’s clear that these extra fees are being used to bump up rents indirectly, so as to circumvent the current rent caps.”

Anyone?

ANYONE?

Threshold (Facebook)

32 thoughts on “Reaching A Threshold

  1. wearnicehats

    If I was renting out a place I’d want a non-refundable deposit. It costs money and time to get a place rented, not to mention the mortgages and insurance etc that have to be paid while the place is empty. You can’t be having people saying they will rent and then dropping out left right and centre. Perfectly reasonable as long it is made clear to the person that it is non-refundable. And someone should know their HAP limit. And what’s wrong with charging people to pay for their own bins????

    1. Stephen

      In todays market it is only the landlords fault if a property is left empty for and period of time.
      Charging everyone to view something that you know ill only be rented to one person is pure greed and disgusting.

      Also re bins I think it is a case of LL charging more than it is costing for the bins, so they are reselling the service at a profit, that is wrong.

    2. pedeyw

      “You can’t be having people saying they will rent and then dropping out left right and centre” That’s part of what standard deposits are for. Also how often do you really think this happens? Especially in current situation?

      1. wearnicehats

        Stephen – I agree on the viewing charge although I suspect that’s not the true situation that occurred. A holding deposit is different. If you have a €2000 mortgage on the place it is reasonable to take €500 for the empty week that will be involved if someone pulls out and you have to start the process again. It is reasonable to discourage inconvenience to the landlord

        Pedeyw – a holding deposit differs from a standard deposit. The standard deposit is to protect from non payment of rent and damage incurred once the rental agreement is in place

        1. pedeyw

          Yeah, I understand the difference but there isn’t a need for one. Any money incurred in renting a place is the cost of doing business and will be made back within a fairly sure short time by a landlord. If your property is empty for any period of time it’s because it’s too expensive.

  2. Spud

    This story is going around like wildfire.
    It has to be fake news or a scam of sorts.

    Has to be.

    Has to…

  3. Andy Moore

    Scammers I’d say ?? Sounds a bit like a con in Eastenders during the 80’s when Nick Cotton got all HSE to dear old Dot !!

  4. anne

    “circumvent rent caps”..eh hello? rents went up 10+ percent. Rent caps are ignored by landlords & aren’t enforced.

    This is nothing more than a little something extra for landlords.. coz like they have to pay tax on income, it’s terrible.

    But they’re not trying to circumvent anything. They’re blatantly gouging.

  5. Vanessa off the Telly

    This sounds more letting agent/ management company beheavior to me
    rather than Paddy and Mary showing some people around their one bed in Inchicore

      1. wearnicehats

        Have you ever put a deposit down on an expensive consumer item? They are almost always non-refundable. The reason is so that the retailer is not inconvenienced and/or out of pocket because you choose to change your mind. No different here. It’s not gouging – it’s just business and if the business terms are clear then more fool you for breaking them. You are just one of these people who think we all live in some fruitarian utopia where we can buy coffee in return for some beads.

        1. pedeyw

          It is different here, though. This is like a shop charging you to enter their store to see their product regardless of whether you’re buying or not.

  6. DeKloot

    Seriously… The only option left here is civil disobedience and vigilante justice. I can’t believe I’ve written that but if the State or its agents cannot or will not make even the most basic of provisions and protections for the People, well…. burn them with fire….

    At least the lads in the Park will be able to put on their balaclavas and jackboots for a turn.

  7. JunkFace

    Introducing a new low for Ireland! Just when you think its not possible to extort people any further, we have pay to view a property?!!

    WTF to infinity!

      1. postmanpat

        “You have reached your limit of 3 property views a day” “sign up for Daft Premium and get unlimited views a month *, signup today and get a months free** trial. *first month free ,afterward €29.99 per month for 11 months, **fair use, terms and conditions apply . Daft is a trading name of our dark lord satan, (formerly lucifer aka beelzebub aka mephistopheles, ) 666 hell heights, devil street , hell dimension, Dublin 4

  8. wearnicehats

    Clearly none of the outraged torch burners posting here have ever had to get a child into a good secondary school

      1. livid

        …the suggestion is that (some) secondary schools make you pay a non-refundable deposit to put your child’s name on the waiting list.

        It is a similar ‘scam’…. so an appropriate comparison.

  9. nellyb

    Are there legal proceedings? If agencies didn’t break any laws, why no names for them? It’d safe people time not to bother with these.
    Besides, nameless culprits make undeserving agents suspects. It is not good for anyone, especially renters.

  10. Cian

    Anyone see Threshold’s apology today about this? It never happened.

    Housing charity Threshold has apologised for incorrectly claiming that prospective tenants were being asked by landlords to pay “viewing fees” to be able to see rental properties.

    The charity issued a statement yesterday clarifying remarks made at a media briefing last week that led to widespread media reporting and political criticism about landlords seeking these fees.

    https://www.irishtimes.com/news/ireland/irish-news/threshold-apologises-for-falsely-claiming-landlords-were-charging-viewing-fees-1.3667085

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