Frozen too: the pros and cons of rent control

Rents in Dublin have doubled over the past nine years and they are soaring in other cities too. Some, like Sinn Féin’s Eoin Ó Broin, are proposing a short-term freeze to try to curb the rises, but others say such measures won’t help – and could make things worse

15th December, 2019
Frozen too: the pros and cons of rent control
Apartments in the Dublin docklands. Picture: Fergal Phillips

Economists tend not to agree on much, but one cause unites most of them: they hate rent-control measures.

Assar Lindbeck, a Stockholm University economics professor, captured just how strongly he and his colleagues felt about them when he said: “In many cases, rent control appears to be the most efficient technique presently known to destroy a city – except for bombing.”

Opposition to what some perceive as a logical means of addressing a...

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