Guirke, like many other Shinners, has many Properties, they are Landlords, now Where is the Clown, O’Broin, Any Comment??

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Sinn Féin TD Johnny Guirke says ‘letting agent error’ behind failure to register rental property with RTB

26th August 2022

A rental property owned by Sinn Féin TD Johnny Guirke was not registered with the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB), the Irish Independent can reveal.

Mr Guirke has four rental properties across the country – two in Co Longford, a house in Co Meath and a property in Co Galway.

A search of the RTB’s database of registered tenancies this week showed that while the two houses in Edgeworthstown, Co Longford, and the house in Oldcastle, Co Meath, are listed, his house in Cois na hAbhainn in Galway was not.

When contacted for comment, Mr Guirke said this property was managed by a letting agency that had taken on responsibility for registration with the RTB.

“This property was initially registered. However, it has come to my attention that this registration lapsed due to an error on behalf of the letting agent,” the Meath TD said.

“As soon as I became aware of this, I immediately rectified this and the property is registered again with the RTB.

“I take my responsibilities very seriously and regret that this error occurred.”

It comes after Fianna Fáil TD Robert Troy, who stepped down as junior minister on Wednesday after coming under intense scrutiny for not including several properties in his Oireachtas declaration of interests, also failed to register one of his rental properties with the RTB.

An apartment he owns above Ballynacargy post office in Co Westmeath has been rented out since last November, but Mr Troy admitted it had not been listed as a rental with the RTB up until last week.

He said the rental was being handled by a letting agent, and after making enquiries following queries from journalists about his property interests, he learned it had not been fully registered.

The Longford-Westmeath TD said he addressed the anomaly “immediately” and it had now been registered. He also paid a fee of €90 for registering nine months late.

Landlords who do not register a tenancy can be fined up to €4,000 and face imprisonment of up to six months on conviction after new laws were introduced last April.

Mr Guirke has two three-bedroom houses in the Abhainn Glas estate in Edgeworthstown that are owned by his company, Moylagh Construction, and a four-bedroom house in Cluain Loinn in Oldcastle.

All three are registered with the RTB.

“I own four rental properties, which I have always declared in full with SIPO [Standards In Public Office Commission],” Mr Guirke said.

“I manage three of these properties directly.”

Mr Guirke did not respond to queries about when he became aware of the issue with the Cois na hAbhainn property and when it was rectified.

All tenancies that fall within the remit of the RTB are required to be registered within one month of a tenancy beginning.

Landlords must register a tenancy every year, even when the tenant has been living in a property continuously for a number of years.

Applications can be done online or by regular mail.

A spokesperson for the RTB said applications sent in by post often “take some time” to be added to the register.

The basic fee for registering a private rented property is €40 a year, with a late fee of €10 applied for each month the registration is late.

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