Megan Jordan became increasingly desperate as she browsed the ads for a rental.
Some landlords were charging up to €1,600 a month for three-bedroom houses in the Wexford villages she grew up near.
As the days grew shorter, her worries increased.
It was not long since she had found out that she was pregnant and it would not be possible to live with her partner Liam’s parents in Ballyhogue, between Wexford and Enniscorthy, for much longer.
An original plan to add an extension to their house seemed to have come to nothing. The credit union raised many questions about securing the property, although her partner’s family offered guarantees.
Then she found a place to rent in Bree. Knowing someone who knew someone helped, she said. She’s lucky, although a 1,100 euro deposit for 1,100 euro a month’s rent and filling up the oil tank for the winter have wiped out a large part of her savings.
Apart from her first rent, a one-bedroom flat in Edermine, which costs 130 euros a week, this is a big financial burden.
“It’s a lot of money to give away right away, and that’s with Christmas on the way. We both had to cancel our savings,” she said.
She feels further than ever from being able to buy a house.
Like her partner Liam, a tiler, Megan works full time. She is the deputy director of a local daycare center.
“Just by luck I looked at adverts and saw this twin room for €1,100 a month which isn’t as expensive as current house prices are and bins are included.
“We’re very lucky to have found our way here, but it’s very frustrating,” she said.
“When I moved into Liam’s flat, the city council took me off the council housing list because we had decent living conditions. I’ve been on the list since my early 20’s.
“Two houses became vacant in Ballyhogue and one was next to my mother who had had a heart attack. It would have been ideal.
“I contacted local politicians but was told I now live with a partner in a four bedroom house and ‘why do you need a house?’
“I left and graduated. I’ve worked my whole life since I left school. While I was studying early childhood education, I had two jobs, at KFC and at the daycare. I just think anyone who works full time and tries to improve gets a slap in the face.
“I’m trying to get back on the list but they’re looking for massive amounts of information. Now we are essentially back to square one.”
Meanwhile, thousands of people are expected to gather in Dublin today for a national ‘raise the roof’ rally.
Owen Reidy, general secretary of the Irish Trades Union Congress, said the housing crisis is the most important issue on which he is currently campaigning.
https://www.independent.ie/irish-news/anyone-trying-to-better-themselves-is-getting-smacked-in-the-face-pregnant-womans-desperate-struggle-to-find-home-to-rent-42175038.html “Anyone who tries to reform gets a slap in the face” – a pregnant woman’s desperate struggle to find an apartment to rent