New legislation to limit landlords' rights

Discussion in 'Housing and mortgage arrears - policy issues' started by Brendan Burgess, 5 Apr 2019.

  1. Brendan Burgess

    Brendan Burgess Founder

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    Last edited: 5 Apr 2019
    Heard this on the news just now and Threshold and Focus Ireland are really delighted.

    https://www.housing.gov.ie/housing/...s-board/minister-murphy-announces-new-reforms


    Provisions relating to rent setting and rent reviews inside and outside of Rent Pressure Zones (RPZs):

    • The designation of existing RPZs will be extended to the end of 2021.
    • The exemptions from the 4% p.a. rent increase restriction in RPZs have been revised so to apply only to the first rent setting, rather than every rent setting, during the period of RPZ designation in respect of a new rental property, including a property that had not be rented in the 2 year period prior to any RPZ designation.
    • Also, a definition is proposed to illustrate the type of works that qualify for the exemption from the rent increase restriction in respect of a substantial change in the nature of the rental property – such works shall consist of either a permanent extension increasing the floor area by 25% or at least 3 of the following; (a) a permanent alteration of the internal layout, (b) adaptations for persons with a disability, (c) a permanent increase in the number of rooms, (d) an improvement in the BER by 2 or more ratings.
    • For fairness across the country, revisions are proposed in respect of the average rent qualifying criterion for RPZ designation. Using RTB data, (i) the rent of a dwelling in the Greater Dublin Area (Kildare, Wicklow and Meath) will now be compared to the average rent across the country, excluding Dublin rents; and (ii) the rent of a dwelling outside of the Greater Dublin Area will be compared to the average rent across the country, excluding the Greater Dublin Area rents.
    • Outside of RPZ’s, the requirement for bi-annual rent review cycles, rather than annual, will continue to the end of 2021.
    Provisions relating to tenancy termination under the Act:

    • the new RTB sanctioning regime will apply to improper conduct by a landlord who contravenes the tenancy termination provisions;
    • landlords will be required to copy a tenancy termination notice to the RTB;
    • where a landlord terminates a tenancy because he/she intends to sell the property, he/she must enter into a contract for sale within 9 months of the termination date and if not, must offer to re-let to a former tenant who provides their contact details;
    • where a landlord terminates a tenancy because he/she needs the property for his/her own occupation or for a family member, that property must be offered back to the former tenant who provides their contact details where it again becomes vacant within 1 year, rather than 6 months (as currently provided for in the Act), of the termination date;
    • where a landlord terminates a tenancy because he/she needs to substantially refurbish/renovate the property, that property must be offered back to the former tenant who provides their contact details, upon completion of the works;
    • Also a certificate from an architect or surveyor will be required to the effect that the proposed substantial refurbishment/renovation works in question would pose a health and safety risk requiring vacation by the tenants and would require at least 3 weeks to complete;
    • 180 days (approx. 6 months) notice period to be provided by landlords who terminate a tenancy of between 3 and 7 years’ duration.
     
    Last edited: 5 Apr 2019
  2. Brendan Burgess

    Brendan Burgess Founder

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    I thought that the RTE news report said that landlords who sell properties must leave their tenants there? But that does not seem to be in the proposals.

    where a landlord terminates a tenancy because he/she needs the property for his/her own occupation or for a family member, that property must be offered back to the former tenant who provides their contact details where it again becomes vacant within 1 year, rather than 6 months (as currently provided for in the Act), of the termination date;

    So they can terminate a tenancy to sell the property, but they must actually sell the property.

    It seems that the Minister tried to introduce the right of the tenant to stay in the property but it would have been unconstitutional.

    Many of these new reforms are being made following a series of engagements between the Taoiseach and I and the leading NGOs in the area of homelessness. I want to thank them for their very constructive proposals. And while not all of them could be adopted in full, in particular that of banning tenancy terminations for reason of sale, because it was deemed unlawful, these changes will help people who are struggling most to keep a roof over their heads.
     
    Last edited: 5 Apr 2019
  3. NoRegretsCoyote

    NoRegretsCoyote Frequent Poster

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    A healthy market needs both tenants and landlords with strong rights.

    Tenants' rights have been strengthened hugely in recent years. I would quibble with a few issues, but on balance it is a good thing.

    Landlords' rights have not been strengthened at all, and in many cases weakened. A few issues:
    1. Impossible to evict within a reasonable period of time for non-payment of rent
    2. Even if a tenant gives notice the landlord cannot negotiate a market rent with a completely new tenant in an RPZ.
    3. No effective mechanism for clawing back arrears for overholding. I would think two to three months' rent as deposit should be standard, given the protection that tenants now have from early termination of tenancy.
    Short run, this is good news for people in an existing tenancy. Long run, it's very bad for people who want a new tenancy, and is also likely to see small-time landlords just getting out of the market.
     
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  4. Gordon Gekko

    Gordon Gekko Frequent Poster

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    I don’t understand the second bullet point.

    Is this good or bad for a landlord?
     
  5. The Horseman

    The Horseman Frequent Poster

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    I did not either but I thought it was just me!
     
  6. AlbacoreA

    AlbacoreA Frequent Poster

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    Not sure is it to change the calculation if the rent was well blow market rate. Maybe people were going above 4% increases repeatedly where the rent was a long way off market rate.