In Dublin, there were only 73 places to rent for less than €2,000. In Paris there were 4,000 – The Irish Times

Last Thursday morning, just 35 houses were available to rent in Dublin for less than €2,000 on property website myhome.ie, and when a potential tenant’s budget was increased to €3,000, the number of properties proposed increased to 63.

On daft.ie, 73 houses were listed in Dublin for €2,000 or less, rising to 155 when the budget was increased to €3,000.

It was a whole different story in France on the same day.

In Paris, just under 4,000 homes were available to rent for €2,000 or less, according to real estate site seloger.com. In Marseille, which has a population of nearly one million, there were over 1,300 properties available, with the cheapest studio at €327 per month and a three-bedroom villa, spread over 112m² with a garden, on the price of €1,980 per month. month.

In addition to availability, another striking difference between here and there is demand. According to an expat website offering advice for people moving to France, an apartment in Paris is likely to attract the interest of five potential tenants, with the level of interest in a city like Metz falling to less than two. people per apartment, a sobering figure given the long queues that form outside rental properties in Dublin, not to mention the messaging apps that can easily exceed 500.

It is in this context that the French Embassy in Dublin felt compelled last week to issue a warning to potential tenants from France considering coming to Ireland.

The alert highlighted the “serious housing crisis” and the “significant difficulties in finding accommodation” in Ireland, and pointed to a sharp rise in rents in this part of the world, with rents now “much more expensive than in Paris , including shared accommodation”. lodging”.

“People considering relocating to Ireland are therefore advised to allow sufficient time for this housing search (which may take several weeks),” said the French warning, who also underlined what he described. such as the “risk of scams on the various ad sites”.

On par with London

Ireland is certainly expensive, but it is by no means the most expensive place in the world to rent.

The statistics website numbeo.com uses data extracted from people who access its services to calculate the cost of living in cities and countries around the world. He suggests that the cost of renting in Dublin is 24% higher than in Paris and puts Dublin on a par with London. The cost of renting in Geneva, meanwhile, is 37% more expensive than in Paris, while anyone looking to rent a house in New York will pay 62% more than in the French capital.

But there are no warnings or warnings about high prices on the websites of French embassies in the UK, Switzerland or the US.

So why the emphasis on dear old Dublin by French diplomats?

The answer is expectations. The French who settle in Geneva, London or New York know what to expect and are prepared for high prices. This has been the case for many years on these sites. However, they may not be as aware of what is happening in Ireland and may have the mistaken impression that life is both easy and cheap in Ireland. It’s neither, and – as the French note makes clear – finding accommodation here is, in fact, more difficult for people looking to settle here than finding the money to pay for housing.

Criminals exploit people’s difficulties in finding accommodation and particularly target people coming from abroad. The French notice warned newcomers not to sign a contract or post a deposit without first viewing the accommodation and meeting the landlord or estate agent. He alerted people to the prevalence of scam artists working in the Irish property market.

This is advice that Louise Béguine from Rennes would have liked to read before leaving in search of accommodation in Dublin.

She is doing an MA in Art and Design at Dún Laoghaire and, before arriving in Dublin, spent a few fruitless and frustrating weeks looking for accommodation.

“I was getting really nervous about finding a place and every mail I sent was being ignored. I was getting no response from anyone,” she says.

Then, out of the blue, she received a letter from someone claiming to have listed a property she had viewed on daft.ie. “I trusted the courier,” she said. “And I was convinced that I had finally found a place to live. I was so stressed that I really wanted to believe it.

The emails came from a person who identified himself as Sean Kennedy – there were several email contacts between Beguine and “Sean Kennedy”, and while it is clear that “Sean Kennedy” did not appear to have better command of his native language and made unusual syntax and grammar errors, the errors were not so severe that they might stand out to a non-native speaker. They certainly did not sound the alarm for Béguine.

Over email, she asked her new ‘landlord’ to send a contract, saying she thought the paperwork would ‘protect me in some way’.

‘Sean Kennedy’ also sent a video of what he said was his new home, and explained that he couldn’t take or receive calls because he had been inundated with requests for properties that he rented.

When the person answered, I explained that I was there to move in and had all my things with me. They just looked at me and said no. I really did not understand

“I saw the place on the video, I read the contract. I signed it and sent a deposit — the first month’s rent, which was 1,600 euros. It’s a lot for me,” she said.

A few days later she arrived in Dublin and headed for the Smithfield area and what she thought was her new home. “I knocked on the door and when the person answered I explained that I was there to move in and had all my things with me. They just looked at me and said no. I really didn’t understand.

Beguine mentioned the name of the “owner” she was dealing with, and the person let her into the house. “They told me that the same thing had happened to another Frenchwoman a few days earlier, and to a Spaniard. I went to the police and explained what happened and they took a statement and that was it.

She says the guard she spoke to was optimistic about her chances of getting the money back, especially because it had been sent from a French bank account to an account based in England and she was now filing a complaint in Ireland. “And when I contacted my bank in France, they told me there was nothing I could do.”

She says that for her, the warning on the French Embassy website “came too late. When I was still looking for a place to live, I didn’t realize how bad the situation was in Dublin, I didn’t imagine it was like that. But since I’ve been here, I’ve met so many people who are struggling.

I’m used to fighting for housing but never heard of anyone getting ripped off where I’m from

She comes from a university town in France and says things can be “really bad where I live too because there are a lot of people looking for a cheap place to live. But it’s much, much more difficult in Dublin, much more expensive. I’m used to fighting for housing but I’ve never heard of anyone getting ripped off where I’m from. It can happen, but I’ve never heard of it.

She has found accommodation, a shared apartment which costs her 800 € per month. “It’s a lot of money, I have scholarships and I’m supported a bit by the French government, but it’s twice as much as I would pay for a studio where I could live alone in Rennes. So, for For that reason alone, I think the Embassy’s warning was entirely appropriate.

The French Embassy in Ireland said: “September is [a] very busy period for young French people coming to Ireland, and Ireland in particular is a very popular destination for French students. The update on our website was written in response to an unusually high number of situations that we had been made aware of over the past few weeks. As French students are the largest cohort of Erasmus students in Ireland, the article has been written in order to raise their awareness of the current situation in Ireland when it comes to renting accommodation.

“Each French Embassy manages the material published on its own website, which is why the French Embassy in Ireland has acted on its own initiative in updating the website.”