Fianna Fáil has demanded the immediate publication of a report due last June that examined extending rent pressures zones.

There are currently 21 areas around the country that are declared as rent pressure zones, where rent increases are limited to a maximum of 4% annually.

The party's housing spokesperson, Barry Cowen, also called for a review of the rent sector by the Commission on Taxation to be made public.

Mr Cowen said what is happening as regards rising rents, increasing house prices and homelessness is not normal.

Focus Ireland has called for more urgent Government action to tackle rocketing rents, as the latest quarterly Rental Price Report shows rents have reached a record high of nearly €1,200 per month.

The report shows rents rose nationwide by an average of 11.2% in the year to September to an average of €1,198 - the sixth quarter in a row a new all-time high has been set.

Mr Cowen said comments from the Taoiseach and the Minister for Housing that the country's homelessness rate was low by international standards was part of an attempt by Government to claim things were normal.

"There is a narrative that this is normal and that must be challenged," he said.

The Fianna Fáil TD also took issue with Government claims that €300,000 is an affordable price for a house.

In Dublin, the report shows the increase in rents in the year to September was 12.3% and rents in the capital are now almost 23% higher than their previous peak in 2008.

In Cork, rents rose by 5.3% in the year to September, while in Galway, rents were 9.8% higher than a year previously.

In Limerick city, rents rose by 10.9% during the past 12 months, while in Waterford the increase was 8.5%.

Outside the five main cities, rents have risen by 10.8%.

Houses not overvalued, says ESRI

There were 3,365 properties available to rent countrywide on 1 November, which is the lowest number ever recorded for this time of year since the series started in 2006 and the total marks a 16% decrease on the same number a year previously.

In Dublin, there were just 1,300 homes available to rent, compared to more than 6,700 on the same date in 2009.

Focus Ireland has warned that, despite the Strategy for the Rental Sector published 12 months ago, Government action to address the rental crisis has had very limited impact so far.

Ronan Lyons, Assistant Professor in Economics at Trinity College and economist, said there was no sign of rents easing.

Speaking to RTÉ’s Morning Ireland, Mr Lyons said lack of availability is the problem and there has been almost a halving of available accommodation since the start of the year.

He said that there is a growing population and changing demographic which has lead to more demand for property, however, there has been very little change in available stock.

Mr Lyons said it is a countrywide problem, and not just an urban issue.

Rents in Cavan are, he noted, 6% higher now than during the Celtic Tiger years.

He said said that the rent pressure zone system is not working because of the imbalance between supply and demand.