By Luke Carry
With rent prices increasing nationally, and this increase particularly high in the capital, commuting to the capital is becoming more popular. Many commuters say that it’s their own choice to travel from and live outside the city. There are increasing numbers of commuters who are frustrated at the increases in rent prices which have left no other alternative than a daily commute.
Joe Dillon (26) lives in Virginia, Co. Cavan. Before he arrives in Dublin for work, he has already completed a two-hour bus journey. This is followed by a short walk and commute via the Luas line to his workplace. After a full day’s work Joe is greeted with the same journey before he reaches home.
“Something has to be done,” he said. “It’s becoming clear that rental prices are going out of control. People like myself are on a full time wage, working a full week. Yet if I take on the burden of rent in Dublin I’d not be living comfortably.”
Dillon added: “I don’t think rent prices should increase so significantly while our wages stay the same. How can they continue to increase our cost of living so much? There needs to be some national agency set up to regulate rent prices.”
While renting in Cavan is around the national average and won’t cost as much as the capital, some of Dublin’s surrounding counties do not prove so cost effective.
Sarah Cole (20) is a trainee hairdresser commuting from Kildare. She says her wage isn’t enough to cover rent in Dublin or Kildare. “I am about two years into my training already, I love the profession and I love my workplace. What I don’t like is the commute. It’s just an added three or four hours a day. It takes its toll by the end of the week,” Cole said.
“My biggest issue is that I can’t afford rent in Dublin or at home in Kildare. While the prices in Dublin have gone through the roof, the spillover into Kildare hasn’t helped either. I’m living at home with my parents and currently, I don’t see myself leaving anytime soon,” she added.
This week sees renewed attempts by government to solve the housing crisis. Sinn Féin have put forward proposals which are supported by the Labour Party, the Social Democrats and the Anti-Austerity Alliance-People before Profit to couple the price of rent with the consumer price index.
While these measures are being discussed they do not look set to go through as both Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael attempt to come up with their own alternative to the current crisis.