Minister for Housing Darragh O'Brien has said that the government still has not come to a decision on whether it will ban evictions for a limited time this winter.
However, he said it is exploring options on how it can reduce the impact of the cost of living and housing crises in the coming months.
Speaking to On The Record, Minister O'Brien said: "We've got to put this in the context of where we're at right now."
"Obviously, with the cost of living crisis, the war in Ukraine, we do have continued shrunk supply in our rental sector that we're taking a couple of measures."
Council purchasing homes
In July, the Minister instructed local authorities to purchase homes that tenants on the HAP scheme are evicted from.
"Thankfully, we've seen hundreds of additional homes come in to use."
The Minister said that while no decision has been made regarding a blanket eviction ban yet, he has "been exploring options".
"We've got to be very careful that any measures that could potentially be taken don't have unintended consequences either, such as further diminishing the rental supply that is there."
"We're doing this while thankfully, in a positive way, we're seeing an increase in new build supply right across social and affordable housing and indeed private housing and we need to see that continue."
The Attorney-General has been asked to rule on whether the Government could ban all evictions temporarily, considering record levels of homelessness.
It has concerns such a move outside of the COVID-19 pandemic would not stand up to a legal challenge.
"We've had 10 years of under supply under investment that we're catching up on", Minister O'Brien said.
He added that any measures taken will be "time-bound", not permanent.
"It has to be constructed in a way that both protects the tenants but has to respect the rights of the property owner."
People Before Profit TD Paul Murphy has said that an eviction ban for winter "at the very least" is needed to deal with the impending "tsunami of homelessness".
He told Pat Kenny: "We've been calling for an eviction ban for a long time now."
"We're currently facing a tsunami of homelessness coming into the winter; we have record homeless figures at the moment."
"So 10,800 people in emergency accommodation; amongst them [are] over 3,000 children", he said.
"We know the damage that is being done to those children by the horrific instability of living in emergency accommodation."
'Steadily gone back up'
Deputy Murphy said an increase in evictions is compounding the rise in homelessness.
"They went up 58% in the first six months of this year compared to last year."
"During COVID we had an eviction ban, and the homeless figures came down by just over 10,000 to about just over 8,000."
"Then when the eviction ban was lifted, the homeless figures have steadily gone back up", he explained.
"Now they're touching 11,000 - so at the very least we need an eviction ban for the winter, we think we need a permanent one."
Main image shows Minister for Housing Darragh O'Brien. Image by: Sasko Lazarov/RollingNews.ie