Impact of Covid-19 on the landlord tenant relationship

For over ten years, the Dublin residential rental market was a landlord’s market for many reasons:

  • A strong economic recovery;
  • Unprecedented number of jobs created in Dublin supported by foreign direct investment in the tech ecosystem;
  • Complete lack of any new apartment building for nearly a decade.

This is a classic supply and demand mismatch. The Covid-19 pandemic has changed the fundamentals of the market and there is now equilibrium on the relationship between landlord and tenant. In some parts of Dublin, it could be argued that it is a tenant’s market.

At the exact same time the short-term letting market collapsed, causing a sharp increase in available properties, the demand for rental accommodation dropped due to many tech workers leaving Dublin. While this has been a challenging year, landlords must now up their game in the rental accommodation they are offering and consider what tenants want in this more competitive market.

What do tenants want and how do landlords stand out from the competition?

  • A seamless application process;
  • Good wi-fi connection set up before they move in;
  • Flexible leases (this is a little trickier);
  • Property to be pre-checked before they move in;
  • Smart interior design

Another factor that landlords must consider is their competition. More and more tenants are looking at the private rental sector (PRS) market and quality of properties that include desirable amenities on site, usually including concierge services, security, gym facilities, residents lounge etc. How are we in Owen Reilly going to help our landlords compete with these purpose built developments?

  • We are a tech enabled firm and can offer the seamless application process that tenants want;
  • We advise clients on the realistic rental value of their property;
  • Ensure properties are fitted out properly, and recommending upgrades where necessary;
  • Focus on creating the best tenant living experience.

When this pandemic is over, the market is not going to return to what it was. Travel will be more limited, remote working will remain and tenants needs will be more important in the rental market. Landlords will have to improve their offering. The rental market is not going back to the way it was.

Professionalisation of the rental market is and will be a core strategy. Purpose built developments, set up by international funds excel at this model and have a significant impact on the rental market here in Ireland. Our goal is to ensure that private landlords can compete with this.