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Rental Regulations in Ireland

Whether you are renting a property or letting out your own property there are numerous regulations involved. Over the years they have continued to increase and we have listed some of these below.....

Northern Ireland Here

Republic of Ireland Here

Additional letting info

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Republic of Ireland

Building Energy Rating - Certificates in Ireland (BER)

A BER is similar to the energy label for a household electrical appliance like your fridge. The label has a scale of A-G. A-rated homes are the most energy efficient and G the least efficient.

From the 1st of January 2009 a BER certificate became compulsory for all homes being sold or rented. The sellers or landlords must provide a BER to tenants on all new and existing domestic dwellings, regardless of age when being offered for sale or rented.

BERs are carried out by specially trained BER assessors, registered by Sustainable Energy Ireland (SEI)

BER assessments are carried out by registered BER assessors who have trained under the National Framework of Qualifications and have registered with SEI.BER assessors must meet requirements set by SEI, including the signing up to a Code of Conduct.

Before a property goes on the letting market: A person offering a property for sale or rent on or after 9th January 2013, or their agent, shall ensure that the energy performance indicator of the current BER certificate for the building is stated in any advertisements, where such advertisements are taken relating to the sale or letting of that building. Prospective buyers and renters will be shown the BER rating (Alphanumeric value) along with other prescribed content (dependent on the particular medium) in a prominent location in each specific advertisement.

More information here

Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland

Fire Blankets and smoke detectors in Rental Properties

Landlords must provide a fire blanket in all rental properties and smoke detectors that will last ten years.

Residential Tenancies Board - RTB

The PRTB was established in September 2004 to operate a national tenancy registration system and to resolve disputes between landlords and tenants. As part of its remit, the PRTB also provides policy advice to the Government on the private rented sector. The PRTB dispute resolution service replaces the courts in relation to the majority of landlord and tenant disputes. Please note that in order to provide a fair and neutral service to both parties, the PRTB cannot provide legal advice or specific guidance to either case party in relation to their dispute. It has been re-branded as the Residential Tenancies Board - RTB

Residential Tenancies Act

Changes to the Residential Tenancies Act and Introduction of the Deposit Protection Scheme The new Residential Tenancies Act was signed in to law recently and represents the biggest change to affect the rental sector in over a decade. The legislation contains lots of technical details which will significantly affect landlords and will greatly increase the amount of paperwork and legal requirements to be complied with.

The new act brings into force the legislation required for the commencement of the Deposit Protection Scheme which will be operated by the PRTB. The legislation contains numerous measures many of which will be introduced on a phased basis and www.irishlandlord.com will keep you updated as the changes take effect.

For now the key points to note are: The new deposit protection scheme has not yet commenced. For the moment there is no immediate change to the handling of deposits. The notice period for a rent increase has increased to 90 days. The legislation contains new requirements to provide comparable market rents and other documentation to tenants but this element of the act is not yet active.

From 1st January 2016 a landlord cannot discriminate against a person in receipt of rent supplement, housing assistance or any payment under the Social Welfare Acts

Rent Increase Rent Increases can only be every 24 months for the next 4 years and the notice period of the rent increase has changed from 28 days to 90 days; give a few days more to be sure of compliance.

Source of information - Irish Landlord.com and Irish Property Owner's Association

Deposits - July 2014

A guide was published in early July with useful information for tenants getting their deposits back. It has been produced by the Private Residential Tenancies Board (PRTB), the Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland (SCSI), Threshold the national housing charity and the Union of Students in Ireland (USI)

Click on image on left to download

Further information on Letting in the Republic of Ireland from:

Irish Landlord.com and

Irish Property Owner's Association -IPOA

Citizens Information

September 2014 \\\\\\\\\\\\\ October 2014

Changes to the Residential Tenancies Act and Introduction of the Deposit Protection Scheme - December 2015 - Here

Landlord & Tenant Insurance Here

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Northern Ireland

For Private Tenancy Agreements (Northern Ireland), the landlord needs to provide the following:

  • Landlord Registration - All private landlords who let residential property in Northern Ireland are required to register on the Landlord Registration Scheme under regulations that came into force on the 25th February 2014. Visit Site Here
  • For existing tenancies registration must take place within 12 months of 25th February 2014. The new scheme will will provide a centrally held register of private landlords with up to date and accurate information to allow tenants, local councils and neighbours to identify registered landlords. Registration costs £70 if the process is completed online and £80 for non-electronic / paper registrations. It is renewable every three years. A landlord only pays one fee regardless of the number of properties owned. If a landlord is registered under Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMO) they do not need to register again. Once the landlord has registerd the landlord will receive a certificate of registration with an unique registration number. The letting agent must be named, however there is no legal obligation for an agent to ensure that the Landlord is registered.An agent can register on behalf of a landlord.
  • Since 1st April 2007 the law requires that tenants are issued with a "Statement of Tenancy Terms", plus an inventory and rent book. All landlords are legally obligated to provide these items and failure to do so can result in prosecution and a hefty fine. In these circumstances, it makes sense to get the tenant to acknowledge safe receipt of these items in writing.
  • Private Tenancy Agreements which should include a comprehensive inventory and / or schedule of condition, as applicable. This needs to be signed by all parties concerned, after all the required monies are received.
  • Ann amendments that may have been agreed in the Private Tenancy Agreement, need to be either initialled (in the case of a minor amendment) or added with a clear signature confirming agreement. In either case, the signature / initials need to be clearly times and dated before parting with the keys to the property.
  • Details about the tenancy deposit and the scheme in which it is protected (individual scheme providers / adminstrators have their oen requirements which should be carefully adhered to) Source: UK Landlord - (National Landlords Association - NLA) magazine Issue 165 November/December 2013

Energy Performance Certificates (EPC)

Energy Performance Certificates (EPC) have ben required for all property sales and rentals from the end of December 2008. Homes and commercial - when sold, built or rented have to have an energy performance certificate (EPC). This initiative is the result of European legislation - the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive - which all member states must adopt.

Before a property goes on the letting market: When a property is advertised for sale or rent, the landlord's agent will need the EPC as s/he is legally required to include the energy performance indicator from certificate on any commercial media for that property. This could include brochures, newspaper advertisements and property websites. A simple "for sale" or "for let" board or sign would not require the energy performance indicator to be included. This will also be required for landlords not using an agent.

Northern Ireland Domestic Energy Performance Certificate Register Here

Fire and Furnishing Regulations

All rented accommodation must comply with the Furniture & Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988. This is for all upholstered furniture -Beds, headboards of beds and mattresses, Sofa-beds, futons and other convertibles, Nursery furniture, Garden furniture which is suitable for use in the property,Scatter cushions, seat pads and pillows.

They do not include - Non upholstered headboards on beds, Pillow cases, sleeping bags, curtains, carpets, duvets and sheets, Loose covers for mattresses or furniture made before 1950.

Each item of furniture or furnishings will have a label attached to it stating compliance with the regulations. Do not cut these off and if you are having an item of furniture re-upholstered, make sure the upholsterer puts on the appropriate label, as otherwise you cannot include that item of furniture in the letting.

Gas Safety Regulations

All landlords must ensure that gas boilers get an annual safety check - carried out by someone who is registered with the Gas Safe Register anda record of the safety checks is kept and issued within 28 days of each annual check and a copy must be given to the tenant. Tenants are responsible for maintaining gas appliances which they own, or are entitled to take with them at the end of the letting.

Electrical Safety

The electrical wiring circuits, switches and sockets in a let property must be in a safe condition, good working order and adequate for the needs of the tenants. Electrical equipment in furnished privately rented housing which is hired as part of the tenancy agreement is now subject to the Electrical Equipment (Safety) Regulations 1994. The NI Executive website says that "Landlords are advised to ensure that a satisfactory test programme is set up for all electrical equipment in properties. These checks can be both visual and full electrical checks. The frequency and type of check will depend on the type of appliance and how often it is used by the tenant" More information Here

Deposits in Rented Accommodation

From the 1st April 2013 tenant's deposits will have to be registered. This arrangement has been in force in England and Wales since 2007 and in Scotland since July 2012.

There are two types of schemes which have been approved to operate in Northern Ireland, the custodial scheme and the Insurance scheme - The Custodial scheme, which is free for both the landlord and tenant to use, is where all the deposit is handed over by the landlord to the scheme administrator for safe keeping in a designated account and either the tenant or the landlord can apply at the end of the tenancy for repayment of the deposit.

The second scheme is the Insurance based scheme is where the Landlord holds on to the deposit and pays a fee and any contribution towards insurance to the scheme administrator. The Landlord refunds the deposit to the tenant when it is due to be refunded. In the case where there is a dispute, the landlord hands over to the scheme administrator the disputed amount to safeguard until the dispute is resolved.

Therefore any deposit taken on or after the 1 April 2013 in relation to a private tenancy has to be protected in an approved tenancy deposit scheme. The DSD has approved 3 different companies to provide tenancy deposit protection schemes in Northern Ireland.

TDS Northern Ireland

my|deposits Northern Ireland

The Letting Protection Service Northern Ireland

See also: Only just over a month to go before Deposit Regulation in Northern Ireland - February 2013

Further information on Letting in the Northern Ireland from:

National Landlords Association - NLA and

Association of Residential Letting Agents - ARLA

Housing Rights - advice for Northern Ireland - Renting a home in Northern Ireland

 

Landlord & Tenant Insurance Here

N.B. This information should not be relied on for accuracy and is presented here without the responsibility of jml Property Service and the website it is being displayed at. jml property Services 02-13 and later dates

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Additional information on letting (you will be leaving this site for the following)

How to present your rental property for letting

How not to present your rental property for letting

Condensation Problems in Rental Property

Landlord Rental Info - How do I Let my Property?

Advice for tenants renting a property

Lettings jargon in the UK

Rent Control would make things worse for tenants says PRTB report - October 2014

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