What Obligations Do Landlords Have in Ireland?
Being a landlord in Ireland is almost like a full-time job. To be a successful property owner, you must be familiar with all the duties and obligations you have. The Residential Tenancies Act not only protects tenants’ rights, but also imposes numerous duties on landlords with respect to their tenets. As a landlord, it is your responsibility to fulfill your duties in a timely manner to avoid any conflicts with your tenant.
Register the Tenancy
You must renew your tenancy registration annually with the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB). Notifying the RTB of any changes to the property, such as a shift in occupancy or rental rate, is also required.
Repairs and Maintenance of the the Property
It is your responsibility to keep the property in good working order and to ensure that it satisfies certain minimum standards for habitability. Also included are necessities for both exterior and interior upkeep. Any necessary upkeep repairs will be your responsibility to foot the bill for.
Provide a Rent Book
You must supply your tenant with a rent book to keep track of the lease’s duration and the rent paid. Tenants have the right to file a complaint if they are not provided with a rent book.
Make Sure Your Tenants Has Your Contact Details
Get in touch with your tenant and make sure they know how to reach you in case of an emergency. Make sure they have a way to get in touch with you; this information should be included in the lease agreement.
Give Tenants Notice of Rent Changes
Every increase in rent must be announced to tenants at least ninety days in advance. Make sure you’re not breaking any laws when you raise prices, or else someone will file a complaint.
What Restrictions Are There on Deposits?
Most tenants are used to putting down some sort of deposit before moving into a rental property, and this is a good thing because deposits protect landlords from tenants who cause damage to their property.
Tenants who leave a rental property with a security deposit in hand can rest easy knowing they’ll get at least some of their money back. However, the topic of deposits can be delicate, and there are many rules in place to safeguard the integrity of the deposit and its intended use.
You can’t demand more than two months’ rent up front. Both the first month’s rent and a deposit equal to one month’s rent are due at the outset. Except when renting to a student, who can pay more if they wish, it is illegal to charge more than this.
What Restrictions Are There on Deposits?
The RTB plans to provide a mechanism for the mutually beneficial administration of tenancy deposits in the near future. For the time being, a landlord’s ability to withhold a security deposit is defined by law:
When Can I Keep Part of the Deposit?
When a Tenant Leaves without Notice
You can keep the security deposit to cover lost rent if the tenant vacates without providing the required notice under the lease.
If the Tenant Has Outstanding Bills
For any past due utility bills, you can use the security deposit to settle the accounts with your tenant.
If the Tenant Has Caused Damage
You have the right to withhold a portion of the security deposit to cover the cost of repairing any damage caused by the tenant.
Taxes and Insurance
As a landlord, you also have obligations towards the state, and not just to your tenants. For instance, you are required to pay tax on the income you get from the rent. Landlord insurance is not required by law and may be prohibitively expensive in some situations, but it is strongly recommended to ensure financial security in the event of an unexpected event. You should also think about getting insurance, as this may be a requirement of your buy-to-let mortgage.
The following property insurances should be considered:
- Loss of rent insurance
- Contents insurance
- Buildings insurance
- Rent guarantee
When Can I Evict My Tenant?
It can be challenging and time-consuming to evict a tenant, especially if you don’t have a good reason to do so. Tenants have numerous protections under the law when it comes to evictions, so it’s important to follow the proper procedures if you want to end the tenancy. Tenancy termination for acceptable reasons may include:
- Tenants who fail to pay rent
- The time frame for the sale of the property is 9 months
- If you’re a family who desperately needs the house
- Fixing up the house
- The lease can be ended without cause after the sixth year