Residential Rental Arrears and Evictions




A phone call from a journalist gets you citizenship. Why are our institutions so spineless?


No different to the Moonie style ceremonies down the Docklands the past 7 years


This case makes no sense to me.

Firstly they say that " The mother and daughter told the Herald they have lived at Twin Trees, on Nerano Road for 11 years." so 2005 - 2016. They also maintain that “they have paid €262,000 to the landlord since they first rented the house.” You could have paid a number of years mortgage for that money. … 80754.html


1600/mo gives 262k in 13 years 8 months. Maybe the rent was higher during the bubble.

Not sure how that is relevant. If they bought a place they’d be in mortgage arrears rather then rental arrears.

The odd aspect is that we have apparently random/arbitrary outcomes for people who don’t pay their rent/mortgage. It shouldn’t be possible to negotiate your way out of default based on the quality of your sob story.


This all sounds like a terrible lifestory to be fair.
But… I’m just struggling to see how the two of them could not have spent most of the last decade renting in rural Ireland for 400-500 a month and livin’ on the social.
Or at least a cheaper rental location in Greater Dublin area that would still allow access to Dublin by bus/train etc for any medical issues, college etc.


I really don’t see how to distinguish this story from the one about the countless people who cant/won’t pay their mortgages. The media are obsessed by Dalkey.


Some more references: … n-1.216999

Christa Johnson/Willis is involved in the

She is described as Christa Johnson - Behavioural Psychologist – Dublin at

They expected to be able to live rent-free with no consequences.


I don’t get the link between your observations and conclusion, nor the link back to the reports of sexual abuse allegations and contested custody going back 20 years.

I’m not saying they did or didn’t expect to live rent-free without consequences, just that I don’t see the link.

Cards on table: I actually knew this family in childhood about 30 years ago. Had no idea of the family complications going on in the background, though father was absent. Christa was a very smart, pleasant, outgoing girl; kind of person you’d think back on and say “I wonder what she’s been up to, I’d say she’s gone places anyway”.

Against that background, and without any direct knowledge of the family or individuals today beyond the newspaper reports, I personally would find the entire scenario rather saddening/disheartening (the 1999 reports more-so, obviously, but this recent stuff isn’t encouraging either).

And in the scheme of things, I’ve little sympathy for the landlord. Not that the landlord isn’t entitled to the rent. Nor that the tenants didn’t have a responsibility/obligation to pay the rent. Rather that it appears the landlord had solid tenants (2 women, and having been in a prior home of theirs, clean living) for 10-11 years without a void-period and I would guess without a major overhaul/refurbish. This carried him/her through the crash in rents and rental market. Now there’s a hitch and there are significant arrears, now vindicated by a court judgment albeit claiming the back-rent will be difficult. However, if the tenants vacate in January then the landlord can console him/her self that the property will be going back on the market at an absolute high-point. Taking a 10-12 year overview, the landlord has still had a pretty good out-turn for the line of business.

Certainly, if I had to choose to inflict one set of troubles or the other onto my own family, I’d take the ones we’ve seen from the landlord.


There are lots of dichotomies on this board and one of those is people who believe sob stories like this and people who do not, people who take statements are face value and those who do not and check them and demand evidence to support assertions, people who are always willing to blame landlords and never tenants, people who feel that private landlords are always wrong and deserve anything bad that happens to the,

This story and peoples’ various responses to it demonstrates one aspect of the toxic relationship to property that many people in Ireland have.

It is not about feeling that many people have that are entitled to accommodation or shelter without having to take responsibility for its provision and that others must pay for their choice. It is that many people feel they are entitled to a very specific property of a specific type in a specific location, again without having to take responsibility for its provision and that others must pay for it. For this pair, it is a house in Dalkey with sea views. Not an apartment in Dalkey with no sea views or an apartment in Sandycove or Sallynoggin or Dun Laoghaire or Monkstown or Greystones or, heavens above, Drumcondra or Phibsborough or even further afield.

Some question the specificity of the sense of entitlement. Others accept it.

The two sides of the discussion face each other across a canyon

The pair make a long list of unsubstantiated and unsupported allegations where there are always the victim and in the right and everyone else is against them and in the wrong.

They say that the landlord did nothing with the house for 11 years - again an unsubstantiated, unproven and unquestioned claim. A house that did not receive any maintenance for 11 years would be a very sorry if not broken place, especially one facing the sea with salt laden winds. The few pictures I have seen of the pair outside this house do not show an unmaintained property.

Christa Johnson says her mother is blind. But she walked from court unaided.

The landlord gave them five months’ notice. To me that seems reasonable.

Christa Johnson claims to be a behavioural psychologist. There is no Christa Johnson or Christa or Johnson registered with the Psychological Society of Ireland:

That does not necessarily mean anything in itself. But is she a psychologist?

She claims to have lost her job but does not say that she cannot or will not look for a new job, presumably as a psychologist. A brief search finds lots of psychologist jobs:

A bilingual, which she claims to be, psychologist should be able to find work.

The now defunct GoFundMe claims are laughable:

What they were offering is a house in Dalkey that may be open only during some unspecified part of the day for an unspecified number of days in return for free accommodation and an asset that is theirs forever.

They do not just want their rent paid. They want to own the house.

What duress? Prove it. That is defamatory.

Rent at €1,600 a month for nearly 11 years does not equal €262,000.

If you look at rents paid in Dalkey, they were at the level of €1,600 a month in 2007Q4. They then dropped to less than €1,300 and increased back to the €1,600 level only in 2016Q3. … Language=0

They did not have to stay in Dalkey. Why did they not downsize to a cheaper and more affordable house/apartment sooner?

The tenancy is registered with the RTB because it went through their dispute process.

There are only four RTB-registered tenancies listed on Nerano Road in Dalkey: … HTML.mhtml

“Sorrento” Nerano Road Dalkey Dublin Detached House 6 bedrooms
Khyber Lodge Nerano road Dalkey Dublin Detached House 4 bedrooms
1 Beacon Hill Nerano Road Dalkey Dublin Semi-Detached House 2 bedrooms
Nerano Road Dalkey Dublin Detached House 6 bedrooms

There is no Twin Trees listed. Is their house the one described as:

Nerano Road Dalkey Dublin Detached House 6 bedrooms

The pair still claim to be musical performers: … 0d8255a37#

I know lots of people who are struggling to pay rent or who are living in apartments that are still in negative equity and that are unsuitable for their increased family size.

And yet these people work, pay their way and do not whinge and moan, not too much anyway.

When I see this pair and others like then such as Erica Fleming who have their arms out looking for other peoples’ money, who act the professional victim, who demand others subsidise the life style they selected for themselves because they themselves decline to do so, who refuse to take responsibility for their own lives, I just get annoyed.

Are saying that renting is the equivalent of an Insomnia loyalty card where you get to claim a free years’ rent after renting for 10 years? Should this be part of the landlord’s business plan?

How you do know about of a major refurbishment? By taking the word of a pair of fantasists?

How do you know they carried him through the crash? When you look at rental amounts in Dalkey they dropped by around 20%.

These are just more defaulting tenant-biased assumptions not based on any facts.


Frankly, we shouldn’t be wasting anytime discussing these people’s situation. The laws need to be firmer to protect both landlord and tenant. Unfortunately we elected a bunch of corrupt monkeys to run the country and they are incapable of doing anything to resolve these issues. Now the nation is obsessed with property again instead of living our lives positively and productively. What total bullshit.


@Chicken: you’ve projected a lot from your own imagination onto and into what I wrote, and responded more to that than anything I actually wrote, so there’s little point my responding pointwise in turn.


So should the landlord’s net asset position have a bearing on the validity of their claim to stay in the house?

That’s what you seem to be implying. Tell me I’m mis-reading you.


As you like: You’re misreading me.

In particular, your misunderstanding indicates you have misread the words: “I’ve little sympathy for the landlord. Not that the landlord isn’t entitled to the rent. Nor that the tenants didn’t have a responsibility/obligation to pay the rent.”

To parse that out for you, what I said is:

    • "I’ve little sympathy for the landlord. "* In this I indicate that I am not personally very concerned for the final out-turn for the landlord. This is a reference to subjective feelings and emotional response that the story elicited in me. It has no bearing on, nor does it indicate any opinion on the validity of any claim (by landlord or tenant). My degree of sympathy and emotional response does depend on the context and history. I go into that in the remainder of the text you quoted, but before I did that I was careful to note…
  • Not that the landlord isn’t entitled to the rent. Nor that the tenants didn’t have a responsibility/obligation to pay the rent. This part does indeed refer to the validity of the claim. What it says is that the landlord is entitled to the rent. It also says that the people obliged to pay the rent are the tenants. This is a reference to validity of claims and obligations. It is a straight-forward statement, and based on straight-forward facts.
  • I also indicate that the tenants have a responsibility to pay the rent. This is perhaps less clear, but by this I meant that even without a court judgement being enforced, the right thing would be for the tenants to pay the rent if in any way possible: it was the deal

It would be easy, and I have to say tempting, to then go on labouring the point some more, describing in detail how you don’t seem to be able to read or think. However, I’m pretty sure you can in fact read, and think; and yet you misunderstood my point and were so animated by that that you had to jump in with an intemperate attack, casting my statements in a light that renders them rather different than they were (but probably making them easier to rail against).

What I suspect is that because I showed a degree of sympathy for the tenants (and I’ve noted, I’m biased, I knew the daughter 30 years ago as a child and was disturbed to find out 10 years later she’d been at that time in the middle of contested custody and at least allegations of sexual assault), and showed curtailed sympathy for the landlord, that triggered the extreme response. I find that strange, as I’ll come to at the end; but even as I reassess my own thinking, I’m happy with my position.

The history and context matter to the emotional response, and to the objective concern a setback creates: I’d have more sympathy for someone hitting an episode of bad luck who’s had nothing but bad luck for the previous 10 years. If a guy puts €20 on a horse, and the horse falls, I agree he loses the money. If he’d had a string of winners all day, and €2000 in his back-pocket, I wouldn’t have much sympathy for him: I could of course say “hard luck”, but I’d also be saying, ah “he’s grand, he’d a good day of it”. If the guy was broke, had got a cancer diagnosis that morning, and had gone to the bookies and said “please God, if I’m gonna make it make this horse come in for me”, and then lost the €20, I’d have considerably more sympathy, and more objective concern for his situation. Neither reaction, different though they are, is inconsistent with the conviction (and simple fact) that he just lost €20 and has no avenue to reclaim it or recourse to challenge the terms of his bet/contract.

So if (and it was and is an “if”) a landlord has had 10 years of solid tenancy and good return, and can expect to re-let the property quickly and at a good rent: then I’d have less concern for him/her and less sympathy than if he’d had a string of problems with the property and tenants. In any case, the landlord is entitled to the rent, and the tenant is obliged to pay it.

The same goes on the tenant side. In particular, the troubled family history (which I knew of via the earlier newspaper reports in 1999, nearly 20 years before this occurred), means I’ve more concern/sympathy for the tenant than I might otherwise have. But again, that sympathy doesn’t mean that the tenants aren’t obliged to pay the rent.

And to spell things out really, really, clearly; because I just get a gut feeling of more indignation coming:

I am comfortable-enough with the way the contract law is set up. Although my sympathies and sentiments run counter to the judgment in some ways, I support the judgment. The landlord is entitled to the rent. The tenants seem not to be able to pay it (for whatever or multiple reasons). So the tenants must vacate, and should pay the back-rent.

It is entirely possible for a mature individual to have sympathy for the losing side of a judgment and still to support the judgment if it is well formed and correctly arrived at. I mean, kids learn this at sport: your team loses, and you wish they’d won, but that doesn’t mean you’re questioning the integrity or correctness of the referee or the rules of the game.

Finally, mature adults can hear that other people have feelings/sympathies at odds with their own without causing immediate inner conflict and turmoil and outburst.


It was not an ‘intemperate attack’. It was a question, then a cautious interpretation of your words, then an invitation to correct me.

And you took me up on the invitation at some length.

Anyway, I’m glad I’ve helped you clarify your thinking on the subject:)


some people don’t have to worry about arrears or evictions

€5m rental arrears in Cork. divide that figure for those over 1 year in arrears and there isn’t even a huge amount owed because rents are so low yet they still can’t be bothered to pay their rent. … 1/exam.jpg … 39145.html

google search for “council owed rent” comes back with mostly Irish results.

People are screaming for social housing. How about evicting some of the deadbeats?


Or at least get a garnishee order to deduct the rent from their welfare

An expert thinks we need to run a pilot scheme where council tennants in some areas pay no rent at all. I foresee no problems with this scheme.


I can kind of see his point. The right to education and healthcare is provided universally despite how badly you behave and no matter what your means. However it is only to a minimum standard.

There is an argument that you should put truly incorrigible social tenants in ghettos in very poor quality housing (for free) and then forget about them.

However this would not solve social problems, only exacerbate them. And it is not fair on the children of these people who are not to blame for their parents’ actions.

Some policy problems are very hard to solve.

Never trust anyone with a magic wand solution: here’s looking at you HSH…


Many/most are living in relatively well located three bed homes with front and rear and gardens and a driveway without estate management fees for tiny rents.
Many people who pay their own way and don’t qualify for a council house can only dream of such accommodation with the security of knowing the cost of renting goes down when their income by their own choice or due to factors beyond their control is reduced.