Wednesday, 3 February 2021

Questions (400)

Cian O'Callaghan

Question:

400. Deputy Cian O'Callaghan asked the Minister for Social Protection the number of referrals from the Residential Tenancies Board to the Money Advice and Budgeting Service, MABS, dedicated line under part 3 of the residential tenancies of the Planning and Development, and Residential Tenancies Act 2020; the value of the rent arrears notified to MABS on foot of these referrals; the length of time arrears of rent remain outstanding; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [5058/21]

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Written answers (Question to Social)

The Money Advice and Budgeting Service (MABS), under the aegis of the Citizens Information Board, provides assistance to people, in particular those on low incomes or living on social welfare payments, who are over-indebted and need help and advice with debt problems.  As part of its free services, MABS also provides help and advice to those in mortgage arrears. 

In relation to the number of referrals to MABS arising from the Residential Tenancies Act 2020, there have been 51 referrals to MABS from the 1st August 2020.

44 people out of the 51, who provided information on their arrears, were on average in rent arrears of 4.5 months. The total value of the rent arrears in respect of these 44 cases was some €213,000.  MABS has provided each person with a full assessment under the Scheme. This includes documentation for the client and landlord, if considered a relevant person, and a copy of their Statement of Affairs as Proof.

Furthermore, all 51 people that made contact were signposted to their local MABS office for further budgeting, information, and debt advice.

I trust this clarifies the matter for the Deputy.