Housing Crisis: Cost Rental


Rent prices in Ireland are spiraling out of control. The Green Party has a viable solution to bring the cost of rent down – the cost rental model.

What is the “cost rental” model?

Cost rental is effectively affordable, high-quality rental accommodation, provided by the State or local authorities. It is called cost rental because the rent is used to cover the cost of constructing the accommodation over the life of a long-term building loan. This enables the government and local authorities to plan affordable housing in the long term, and to continue to build new housing even during a downturn. The accommodation would need to be mixed use, mixed tenure with diverse communities to work. It has proven to be a very effective way of providing housing in many European countries.

Watch this video to find out why your rent is so high and how our ‘cost rental’ solution can bring it down:

Dublin renters are now spending over half their income on rent! Financial experts say that when rents go above 30% of income it really starts to impact on a household’s ability to save and cover other costs.


We believe the two publicly owned sites at Cathal Brugha Barracks in Rathmines and Broadstone Bus Depot in Phibsboro are ideal locations to build these cost rental spaces. With nearly 24 hectares of central land in use at these sites, they could be put to much better use as accommodation. This would create 3,000 centrally located homes for people to live in affordably! Let’s make it happen.

The average asking rents for rental properties on the market rose by 81% between 2010 and 2017!

The homelessness crisis

The government has been determined to take a market-led approach to the housing crisis. The utter failure of this approach is reflected in the huge increases in the number of homeless people in Ireland.

9,872 people were in emergency accommodation in June 2018, the highest number ever recorded.

We know that the market will not solve this crisis. We need the government to build homes, and to build them in a sustainable manner that will prevent a crisis like this from reoccurring. The cost rental model must play a part in this approach.


  • The Green Party secured a commitment in the Programme for Government to: develop a cost rental model for the delivery of housing that creates affordability for tenants and a sustainable model for the construction and management of homes. In doing this, we will be informed by international experience of the delivery of cost rental, such as the ‘Vienna Model’
  • The Affordable Housing Bill 2021 will put cost rental housing on a statutory footing and will underpin the provision of cost rental housing mainly by AHB’s, Local Authorities and the LDA.
  • 2021 will see the delivery of approximately 400 cost-rental units (including a development in Shanganagh: https://www.thejournal.ie/housing-dun-laoghaire-shanganagh-5341822-Feb2021/


Read the full text of our cost rental motion:

Cost RentalCost Rental