New changes to rental legislation – Residential Tenancies (Amendment) Act 2021

New changes to rental legislation – Residential Tenancies (Amendment) Act 2021

04/04/2022
New changes to rental legislation – Residential Tenancies (Amendment) Act 2021
Following the enactment in December 2021 of The Residential Tenancies (Amendment) Act 2021, a number of key changes were introduced.

Rent setting in Rent Pressure Zones 

Rent Pressure Zones (RPZs) are located in parts of the country where rents are highest and rising, and where households have the greatest difficulty finding affordable accommodation. With effect from 11 December 2021, for tenancies located within RPZs, rents cannot exceed general inflation, as recorded by Harmonised Index of the Consumer Price (HICP), or 2% per year pro rata, where HICP inflation is higher. This applies to new and existing tenancies (unless an exemption is being applied).

The lower cap on rent increases in RPZs is considered necessary given the prevailing high level of inflation (4.9% for the 12 months to February 2022 as per the HICP Index).

The cap does not apply to properties that already qualified for exemptions that allows for market rent to be set. This would include:

  • properties which had not previously been rented
  • properties which have been substantially refurbished
  • properties with have not been rented for two years (one year for protected structures) prior to the commencement of a tenancy

Rent reviews can only occur once every 12 months in an RPZ and once every 24 months outside an RPZ. A rent review may be permitted more frequently where there has been a substantial change in the nature of the accommodation.

Tenancies of unlimited duration

All new tenancies created on or after 11 June 2022 will become tenancies of unlimited duration after six consecutive months in occupation under the tenancy, without a valid notice of termination been served. This contrasts significantly with previous practice whereby tenancies would end after six years, and a new tenancy arises if no steps were taken to end that tenancy.

Landlords continue to have the right to terminate a tenancy on specific grounds as provided in the Residential Tenancies Act 2004 which include:

  • The landlord or his/her family moving into the property
  • The landlord selling the property
  • The landlord changing the use of the property

Transitional measures are provided for in the Act that allow for the conversion of existing tenancies to tenancies of unlimited duration over time.

Annual Registration 

With effect from 4 April 2022, landlords must register their tenancy every year, within one month of the anniversary of when the tenancy began. The annual registration requirement applies to new and existing tenancies and to assist with the change, a four-month transition period (to 3 August) will be allowed when no late fees will be charged.

To compensate for the frequency in which tenancies will now need to be registered, the RTB have reduced the fees charged for those that register on time. However, for those that do not register on time, cumulative late fees will apply once the transition period has ended (see table below).

Fees for Annual Registration

Private / Student Specific Accommodation (SSA) / Cost Rental Tenancies   From 4 April 2022 Previously 
Standard Registration Within one month of the tenancy commencement date €40 €90

SSAs - €40
Late Fee More than one month after the tenancy commencement date €10 for every month (part thereof) that registration is late €180

SSAs - €10 for every month (part thereof) that registration is late
Composite Registration Fee A maximum of 10 tenancies in one building being registered by the same landlord at the same time and all received within one month of the earliest tenancy commencement date €170 €375

SSAs - €170 for between 5 and 10 tenancies
2nd Registration or subsequent in a 12-month period 2nd and subsequent registration in a 12-month period in respect of the same dwelling provided once received within one month of the tenancy commencement date of the new tenancy No Fee SSAs – no fee
3rd Registration or subsequent in a 12-month period 3rd and subsequent registration in a 12-month period in respect of the same dwelling provided once received within one month of the tenancy commencement date of the new tenancy   No Fee

 

Approved Housing Body (AHB) Tenancies  From 4 April 2022   Previously
Standard Registration Within one month of the tenancy commencement date €20 €90
Additional Late Fee More than one month after the tenancy commencement date €5 for every month (part thereof) that registration is late €20 per month (part thereof to a max fee of €240)
Composite Registration Fee A maximum of 10 tenancies in one building being registered by the same landlord at the same time and all received within one month of the earliest tenancy commencement date €85 €375
2nd Registration or subsequent in a 12-month period 2nd and subsequent registration in a 12-month period in respect of the same dwelling provided once received within one month of the tenancy commencement date of the new tenancy No Fee  
3rd Registration or subsequent in a 12-month period 3rd and subsequent registration in a 12-month period in respect of the same dwelling provided once received within one month of the tenancy commencement date of the new tenancy   No Fee

Should you have any taxation or business questions, our experienced tax team will be happy to share their insights with you.

 


Contact us:

Grayson Buckley, Partner, Tax - Crowe Ireland
Grayson Buckley
Partner, Tax
John Byrne, Partner, Tax - Crowe Ireland
John Byrne
Partner, Tax
Cormac Doyle Crowe Ireland Tax Partner
Cormac Doyle
Partner, Tax
Lisa Kinsella, Partner, Tax - Crowe Ireland
Lisa Kinsella
Partner, Tax