Going to college can be a stressful time financially, particularly in relation to finding somewhere to live within your budget. The Irish Times recently reported that rents in Dublin are soaring as students begin the search for accommodation. Students seeking accommodation can now access a new service – the Rent Index, launched by the Private Residential Tenancies Board [PTRB] that will help them assess the cost of accommodation in their chosen locations around the country.

The Index offers details of actual rent levels across differing types of accommodation, including those near Ireland’s third level institutes, based on its register of 300,750 tenancies across the country. It is the most accurate and authoritative rent report of its kind on the private accommodation sector in Ireland.

It is compiled by the ESRI and is based on the PRTB’s own register of tenancies and this index reveals the actual rents being paid for rented properties. For example, a two bedroom apartment in the vicinity of the University of Limerick had an asking rent of €615 per month, while similar facilities in Donnybrook, near UCD’s Belfield campus, averaged a monthly rate of €1,311.

The Residential Tenancies Act of 2004 set out the function of the PRTB which includes…”the registration of particulars in respect of tenancies” and …”the collection and provision of information relating to the private rented sector, including information concerning prevailing rent levels”….

The PTRB Index is backdated to the third quarter of 2007. It is intended to produce the Index each quarter. Under the Act, Landlords can register a tenancy up to 1 month after the tenancy commencement date. To reflect this and to provide the most accurate report possible the data underpinning the Rent Index is extracted five weeks after the end of each quarter.

Using a simple drop down menu, you can select up to five different property types and any quarter from end 2007 onwards to see the average rent for your selected location.  The location selection is based on population and dataset size.