Tenants’ Tips and Traps – What You Need to Know

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We cannot open a newspaper or switch on the six o’ clock news these days without a headline jumping out at us about the shortage of rental accommodation in the country at present.  In this current economic climate, there is a marked increase in people renting accommodation as opposed to climbing onto that property ladder.
This article will focus on the rights and obligations of residential tenants.

What are your rights?
In Ireland, tenants’ rights are governed by the Residential Tenancies Act 2004 (as amended), the Housing Regulations on Minimum Standards and any written or oral agreement with the landlord.
Such rights include the following:
– The rented accommodation must be in good condition
– You must have privacy – your landlord cannot enter the property you are renting unannounced, unless in an emergency
– You must have a rent book, written contract or lease with the landlord
– You must be given advance notice of increases to your rent
– You must be able to contact your landlord at any reasonable time

– You must be reimbursed by the landlord for any repairs that are carried out to the accommodation, within reason, save and except for repairs for normal wear and tear
– You must be given proper notice before the termination of the tenancy agreement.

What are your obligations?
– Pay your rent in a timely manner
– Maintain the property in good order
– Not to engage in any activities that may cause damage to the property
– Allow the landlord to inspect the property by prior appointment
– Avoid causing damage, nuisance or breaking the law
– Comply with the terms of the tenancy agreement
– Give the landlord valid notice before termination of the tenancy
– Keep a record of all repairs, payments and dealings with the landlord
– Not to do anything that could affect the landlord’s insurance premium on the dwelling.

What if things go wrong?
A body known as the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) was established in Ireland a number of years ago to adjudicate on disputes between landlords and tenants. An aggrieved landlord or tenant may refer a dispute to the Residential Tenancies Board who will then deal with the dispute and may, ultimately, issue a decision as to how the dispute is to be resolved. If the decision of the RTB is not complied with, the aggrieved party has the right to issue proceedings in the civil courts in order to enforce the RTB’s decision.

Please contact us on 068 50900 should you require further advice