Clondalkin mother of two faces housing uncertainty

By Maurice Garvey

ANOTHER potential victim of the housing crisis is facing an uncertain future, despite grave concerns for her health and that of her kids.

Living in Grange View Walk, Clondalkin, for eight years, mother-of-two Rachel Byrne’s lease is being terminated on May 25, and she faces the dreaded prospect of homeless accommodation.

Rachel Byrne 06042017

Her landlord is operating entirely within the law and the Residential Tenancies Act, having provided notice of termination and 224 days notice back in September.

The stark reality of the housing crisis fails to take into account personal circumstances.

Rachel (32) suffers from Crohn’s disease, a litany of mental health problems, and is facing a further operation.

Estranged from the father of her kids, her oldest child Derek (10) has a mild handicap, and Rachel’s mother Pauline Byrne fears the worst.

Pauline said: “She has always paid the rent. When her daughter Aoife turned seven last September, her payment changed from single parent to disability. There was a delay in paying rent but the Department of Social Protection wrote a letter to the agents explaining the problem.

“I took them on holiday to Turkey last July and she collapsed over there and had to be rushed to Beaumont from Dublin Airport. She had a tumor removed but they can’t operate as we are waiting on a CTT scan. She hasn’t done anything wrong – we don’t need this.”

A letter of support from Deansrath Family Centre states their concern that if the family are put in homeless accommodation, it could be “detrimental on their mental and physical health.”

The letter states Rachel has to wear a colostomy bag due to her Crohn’s disease, and attends mental health services in Clondalkin village.

A spokesman for Ray Cooke Auctioneers, which is handling the property for a private landlord, said the notice was delivered as per the requirements of the Residential Tenancies Act. The landlord is acting within the law.”

“As stated in the letter, if Rachel has any issues or feels it is incorrect, queries must be referred to the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB).

“I know there is a human element, but we are not privy to all of those details. This is all within the rules. We just act for the landlord.”

When a tenant begins a new four-year lease within a property, the landlord is entitled to terminate the tenancy within the first six months. According to the RTB the tenant can refer a dispute application to them within 28 days.

New legislation under the Residential Tenancies Act on December 24 – extended the tenancy period from four years to six years – but that does not apply in this case as the letter was sent out before December 24 and within six months of a new four-year lease.

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