Enough Airbnbs in Dublin to house the city’s entire homeless population – report

THE NUMBER of properties in Dublin used as Airbnb rentals is enough to house all of the city’s homeless people, according to a new report.

An investigation by an independent watchdog, organized by the The Irish Mirror, found that there were more than 4,000 Airbnb properties in Dublin alone, compared to an estimated 4,500 people without permanent accommodation in the county.

This figure includes the homeless as well as the 1,103 families living in emergency accommodation such as hotels, hostels and bed and breakfasts.

Pat Doyle, head of the Irish homeless charity Peter McVerry Trust, said the findings of the inquiry were “madness”.

“It’s madness that in the city center you can have a 100 apartment complex that is exclusively used as Airbnbs while the hotels around the corner are used for homeless families.”

However, Mr Doyle said the current environment gave Ireland a chance to change that, as many Airbnbs are empty due to a lack of tourism in the country: AirDNA travel data hub shows that bookings in Dublin fell by 72% in March and April this year.

“This crisis has given us the opportunity to address that,” he said. “The way this pandemic has gone, there will be no tourism for the rest of this year at least.

“Now is the time for investors to consider how they can contribute and remain viable.

“One way is to give a three to five year lease to approved housing organizations to provide social housing, which gives us time to build housing projects.”

There are around 4,500 people without permanent accommodation in Dublin (Getty Images)

Under new restrictions put in place by Dublin City Council late last year, landlords are not allowed to use second homes as short-term rentals – but the survey shows many flout the measures , according to The Irish Mirror, and there has been only one prosecution under the new measures.

However, when the outlet contacted Airbnb for a quote, it dismissed comments from chief Peter McVerry, saying the government was to blame for the lack of suitable accommodation in the city, and denied that most Airbnb hosts were the second homes of the owner.

‘The vast majority of listings on Airbnb in Dublin are already someone’s home, with almost half of hosts in Ireland saying they rely on income from accommodation to make ends meet,’ a doorman said. -word. The Irish Mirror.

“It is inaccurate and misleading to assume that these listings might otherwise be available to a long-term tenant.

“Research by Hooke & MacDonald found that there has been no significant change in the availability of private rental accommodation in Dublin over the past 15 months and that in 2019 only 2,654 flats were built in Dublin .

“During the coronavirus outbreak, hosts in Ireland have stepped up to generously provide free accommodation to healthcare workers and other frontline healthcare professionals in a global initiative that has seen the provision of nearly 200,000 places.

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