Reforms to tackle issue of problematic neighboursMonday 18 February 2013 17.04
New laws will make it easier for people to make complaints about problematic neighbours and anti-social behaviour in estates.
Minister for Housing Jan O'Sullivan has said residents' groups will in future be able to make a complaint on behalf of an individual.
Speaking on RTÉ's Morning Ireland, the minister said this would protect the identity of the resident, who would often find it hard to take a case against people of whom they are frightened.
It was currently difficult and convoluted to take a case, she said, but that process will now be simplified.
Ms O'Sullivan said the changes will redress the balance in favour of law-abiding people who live in housing estates.
Currently, a person has to try to resolve the case with the landlord first.
But in future, residents' groups will be able to go directly to the Private Residential Tenancies Board (PRTB) having tried to make just one contact with the landlord.
The changes will come about through an amendment to the Residential Tenancies Act, which is currently going through the Oireachtas.
They will apply to people who are renting.
The minister said if there is anti-social behaviour, a landlord can evict the tenant after 28 days and take a case to the PRTB.