As part of the overall housing sector, renting has seen a considerable increase in the first 14 years of the twenty-first century. Numbers renting are now similar to those of the 1950s, when Ireland was a very different place economically and socially. Today renting is driven by forces ranging from necessity to choice to ongoing urbanisation: it is becoming the tenure of preference for many, while remaining the tenure for others with no choice. Governing legislation, providers of rental accommodation and the various rental sectors’ economic value and importance are all in flux. The traditional divide between state supplied social housing and the private rented sector is blurring in the face of political preference for market-led solutions and for the voluntary and private sectors to be the main, if not sole, providers of rental accommodation in Ireland.
Renting in Ireland: The Social, Voluntary and Private Sectors brings together for the first time a range of housing experts and practitioners to discuss and analyse renting’s role in Irish society. It comprises sections on the private rented sector; the social rented sector; and other relevant issues including renting and minorities, legislation, space standards and the experience in Northern Ireland. It is hoped that Renting in Ireland: The Social, Voluntary and Private Sectors will help to contextualize discussions on renting, inform debate, and provide insight into how renting affects society and ideas on where to go next for a sector that has never quite received the attention it deserves.