‘TakeBackTheCity’ almost looks like controlled opposition. It is a group that pretends to be trying to challenge the likes of large property developers, but is instead cementing their positions, both in Dublin and Ireland as a whole. In fact there is a very good chance that this group, filled with communists and virtue signallers, will cause the cost of renting and buying in this country to soar to even more dizzying heights.

Actually there is a good chance that the knock-on effects of their activism will make sure that the money to be made from the rise in prices ends up squarely in the hands of the super-rich elites of this country.

What evidence do is there for all this? We have the media and the socialists scrutinizing the number landlords in Fine Gael. The narrative has been spun that Fine Gael have conflicting interests, and as such will not implement legislation that attempts to control the housing market.

This idea is very dangerous. Not because it is based on falsehoods, but because it is based on facts that have been falsely interpreted.

You see, what the media is telling you is that Fine Gael are landlords. What they are not telling you is what kind of landlords they are. The ruling party of poor Éire is one filled with wealthy landowners who more often than not have their eggs in more than just one basket. Of course many of them are not landlords, but the number of them who are, which is quite significant, hold many different types of land.

The vast majority of this is farmland, and this goes for the rest of the Dáil too. I must emphasize that this land is not residential, and so is totally unaffected by any bills passed in regards to land zoned for housing purposes. More importantly, the lesser number of residential units rented out by these TD’s are usually not high risk. Often, they are student accomodation, apartments in wealthy areas of the country or houses far from the rough Inner City or North Dublin areas.

The people who end up renting these kinds of places rarely miss payments, rarely scam landlords, and rarely wreck the buildings they live in, leaving the landlords with massive repair costs. The properties many Fine Gael members control can simply be described as low effort and high yield.

However, even if we left that to one side, the landlords in Fine Gael differ in another very important way. More often than not, Fine Gael landlords own more than one property, meaning every so often they can absorb the losses caused by the likes of one or two missed payments. When you consider the multiplicity of their revenue streams, it soon becomes clear that an occasional loss from a rental property is of no major consequence.

It’s an entirely different story for the average landlord however. You see, most landlords don’t own more than one property. In fact, more often than not they are people who invested in property on the side before the crash, or they are families where both members of the couple had a property before marrying, and are now seriously suffering because of it. The Irish Times reported in January this year that more and more landlords are leaving the Irish market. They’re doing so for a variety of reasons, but chief among them are costs and strict government regulation.

Landlords with larger portfolios can of course absorb unexpected costs more easily. Smaller ones cannot. In fact, smaller ones can be put in serious financial peril if something as small as a single rent payment is missed. Why? Often, they are still paying the mortgage on the property they are renting out, and so a missing rent payment ends up resulting in a missing mortgage payment – because unlike many politicians, small landlords lack the extra funds that would come from other unrelated revenue streams.

‘TakeBackTheCity’ is looking to increase controls on landlords and the housing market in general. They are going to keep protesting and protesting until Fine Gael ‘relents’ to their demands, and implements measures designed to ‘fix’ the system. However, they will actually be designed to put major pressure on smaller landlords while the larger ones operate in a slightly reduced, but still functioning capacity.

This will, of course, force the smaller landlords out of the market. With less houses available to rent, and with the reduced supply now in fewer, wealthier hands, the market will become far easier to control, and so rent costs and housing prices will increase, leaving the larger landlords with huge profits, all thanks to the actions of a few college communists.

So how do I know all this seemingly esoteric knowledge? Am I in on the game? Am I myself someone in the Fine Gael cabal? The answer is no. The only thing I did was look at the past actions of Fine Gael. They’ve pulled stunts like this before, implementing the 4% cap, the first-time buyers grant and many other policies that were supposed to solve the housing problem, but instead only inflated further the wealth of the super elite. They did it before, and it is clear as day that they are about to do it again.

But all this raises the question: Since Fine Gael‘s scam is so obvious, how have they not been called out yet? Well, those in the media either lack the intelligence to understand the game Fine Gael are playing (see Una Mulally’s recent dreadful article), or they are simply in on it, after all we know the extent to which the media colludes with the government.

This goes for TDs as well, with the likes of Boyd Barrett obviously lacking the grey matter to put two and two together, while more savvy operators like Michael Healy-Rae might be turning a blind-eye because they too hold vast amounts of rental properties and could benefit from this Fine Gael scheme.
Which brings us to ‘TakeBackTheCity.’ This article started by saying they could be controlled opposition, but I think that might be giving them too much credit. You know what they say: don’t attribute to malice what can be explained by stupidity.

Peter Caddle

Posted by Peter Caddle

Peter is the Burkean's resident expert on all things popular and cultural.