Ireland, one of the most beautiful countries in Europe, offers all manner of lovely accommodation options, and the type of housing largely depends on the city or county you settle in. Whether you're looking for a country home, a beachside cottage or a modern city apartment, you have a range of accommodation types to choose from, the specifics of which will often come down to your lifestyle and location of employment.

Most people living in Ireland rent accommodation rather than buy. That said, it is worth considering buying a property if you plan to live in Ireland for the long term.

When looking for accommodation in Ireland, it is important to consider a property’s proximity to work, good schools and public transport, especially in the larger cities. Public schools in Ireland generally give priority to children in their catchment areas. Since places are often limited, you should try to secure accommodation close to a particular school if you want to send your children there.

It is also worth noting that in Irish cities, as in most major cities around the world, the further away from public transport a property is, the cheaper it is.

Types of accommodation in Ireland

With housing costs continuing to rise in Ireland, particularly in Dublin, you'll contend with the low supply and high demand for accommodation.

In cities like Dublin and Cork, the most common types of accommodation are apartments and semi-detached row houses. Freestanding houses are more common in towns and villages. Older houses and apartments are usually more spacious. Rental prices drop as you move away from the city centre.

Many younger people and students opt for house shares. They have their own bedroom but share common living areas of an apartment or house. This is especially popular in high-cost areas like Dublin city centre and student-heavy neighbourhoods such as Rathmines in Dublin and Western Road in Cork.

Furnished vs unfurnished

Most apartments and houses in Dublin and other cities come fully furnished. This includes couches, tables, dressers and kitchen appliances. Furnished rentals are more common in urban areas and tend to cost 10 to 20 percent more per month than unfurnished accommodations.

Unfurnished rentals are generally cheaper but require you to provide all furniture and appliances. Some landlords offer the option of renting either furnished or unfurnished, allowing you to choose based on your preferences and budget.

Short lets

Short lets are available, providing flexibility if you need temporary accommodation. These can be found through estate agents and specialised short-term rental websites. They are ideal for business travellers or those in Ireland for a short duration.

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Finding accommodation in Ireland

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There are plenty of websites that advertise housing in Ireland. The most popular ones are and, which cover rentals nationwide. For short-term stays, you can check Airbnb and VRBO. Many universities also have accommodation portals for student housing.

Online rental sites like and are the most effective methods for finding rentals, especially in urban areas. Estate agents are also commonly used, particularly for higher-end properties. They offer services like finding tenants and property management but charge fees. These fees typically range from 6 to 10 percent of the annual rent, plus VAT. Some agents charge a flat fee instead.

Newspaper ads, notice boards and word-of-mouth are less common but can still be useful, especially for finding rooms in shared houses. Local supermarkets often have noticeboards where property rentals are advertised.

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Renting accommodation in Ireland

Making an application

Once you've found a potential new home in Ireland, submit your application promptly. Landlords typically require a completed rental application form, proof of identity, proof of income and references from previous landlords or employers. You'll also need to provide bank statements to show you can afford the rent. Expect background and credit checks.


In Ireland, a rental deposit usually equals one month's rent and must be paid upfront. The deposit is held by the landlord or their agent and returned at the end of the tenancy, barring any rent arrears, unpaid bills or damages beyond normal wear and tear. Always get a signed receipt for your deposit payment.


You'll typically choose between fixed-term and periodic tenancies. A fixed-term tenancy lasts for a set period, often 12 to 24 months, and can only be terminated under specific conditions with proper notice. A periodic tenancy continues indefinitely after the fixed term and can be terminated by either party with appropriate notice.

Common tenancy terms include rent reviews once a year, tenant responsibilities like maintaining the property and paying bills on time, and landlord duties such as providing a safe, habitable environment and respecting your right to quiet enjoyment.

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Utilities in Ireland

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The first thing you should know about utilities in Ireland is that there’s no such thing. Gas, water, electricity and refuse services are referred to as 'the bills'. Mentioning 'utilities' might get you some blank stares.


The Electricity Supply Board remains the main electricity provider in Ireland, but there's growing competition from companies like Bord Gáis Energy and Electric Ireland. The standard voltage is 230V AC. Costs vary based on usage, with off-peak rates being around 30 percent cheaper than peak rates.


Gas is commonly used for cooking and heating. It's supplied via an underground pipe network managed by Gas Networks Ireland. You can choose your gas provider, with options including Bord Gáis Energy, Flogas and Energia. This allows you to shop around for the best rates.


Domestic water services are provided by Uisce Éireann (Irish Water). Currently, there are no direct water charges for households, but an 'Excess Use Charge' is planned for late 2024 for those who exceed an annual allowance. This charge will encourage the conservation and efficient use of water resources.

Bins and recycling

Waste collection services are typically provided by private companies, with costs varying by region. The average cost for weekly refuse collection is around EUR 20 to EUR 30 per month. Recycling services are widely available, with most households accessing kerbside collection for common recyclables like paper, cardboard, plastic and glass. It's also possible to visit recycling depots and landfills, but this can be inconvenient.


Ireland has several major broadband providers, including Eir, Virgin Media, Sky and Vodafone. They offer a range of plans and speeds. Average broadband speeds are around 100 Mbps. Fibre-optic broadband is becoming more widely available, especially in urban areas, providing faster speeds at higher price points.

Read more about Irish internet and telecommunications in Keeping in Touch in Ireland.

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