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Rules you need to know about RERA rental property laws

Thursday, December 21, 2017

With the solid intent to minimize the commonly occurring disputes and misunderstandings between the landlord and the tenant, the Real Estate Regulatory Agency (RERA) has set certain laws. These laws are solely concerned with the renting of properties in Dubai.

Here are the golden rules that are established by the RERA rental property laws:

Term of tenancy contract

  • As per the Article 4, all tenancy contracts or any amendments to such tenancy contracts need to be registered with RERA.
  • As per Article 6, when the contract expires, and the tenant continues to occupy the property without any objection by the landlord, the contract will be renewed for the same term or for a term of one year, whichever is shorter, and under the same terms.
  • As per Article 27, the tenancy contract does not expire upon the death of the landlord or the tenant. The contractual relationship continues with the heirs unless the heirs of the tenant wish to terminate such relationship. This applies to those cases where the termination comes into effect no less than thirty days from the date of notifying the landlord.
  • As per Article 28, transferring the ownership of the property to a new owner does not affect the tenant’s right to continue to occupy the property.
  • As per article 14, a 90 day notice period needs to be provided prior to the expiry of the contract for both parties to amend any of the terms.

Rental increase

  • A landlord can increase the annual rent as per the Rera Calculator. Also, he needs to give the tenant 90 days notice period before renewing the contract.
  • The tenant has two options: he can either accept the increase or he can refuse it under the condition of giving the landlord 60 days notice before the renewal date to vacate the property.

Obligations of the Landlord

  • The landlord needs to hand over the property in good condition at any cost. This allows the tenant to fully use the property as stated in the contract.
  • As stated in Article 16, during the term of the contract, the landlord will be responsible for the property’s maintenance works and for repairing any defect or damage, unless otherwise agreed by the parties.
  • As stated in Article 17, the landlord may not make any changes to the property that would affect the tenant’s full use of it.  
  • The landlord will be completely responsible for any defect, damage, deficiency, and wear and tear occurring to the property for reasons not attributable to the fault of the tenant.

Obligations of the Tenant

  • As stated in Article 19, the tenant may not make any amendments or carry out any restoration or maintenance works to the property unless so permitted by the landlord and after obtaining required licenses from the competent official entities.
  • As stated in Article 21, the Tenant must surrender possession of the Real Property to the Landlord in the same condition in which the Tenant received it at the time of entering into the Tenancy Contract upon the expiry of the term of the Tenancy Contract. The ordinary wear and tear or for certain damage due to reasons beyond the Tenant’s control might be exempted from the rule. In case there is a dispute between the two parties, the matter must be referred to the Tribunal to issue an award in this regard.
  • As per Article 22, the tenant must pay all fees and taxes due to government entities and departments for use of the property or any fees or taxes prescribed for any sub-lease, unless the tenancy contract states otherwise.
  • As stated in Article 23, the tenant may not remove any leasehold improvements made by him upon vacating and surrendering possession of the property, unless otherwise agreed by the parties.

Eviction cases

The Article 25 states that the landlord has the right to evict the tenant in the following cases:

Before the expiry of the Tenancy Contract:

  • Tenant does not pay the Rent or any part within thirty days after the date a Notice to pay is given to the Tenant.
  • Tenant sub-lets the property or any part without obtaining the landlord’s approval in writing.
  • Tenant uses the property or permits others to use it for any illegal purpose.
  • Tenant of commercial property leaves the property unoccupied for no relevant reason for thirty or ninety non-consecutive days within the same year.
  • Tenant makes a change to the property that makes it unsafe or damages the property knowingly or through sheer negligence.
  • Tenant uses the property for a purpose other than that for which it was leased.
  • Property is condemned if the landlord proves this by a technical report issued by the Dubai Municipality.
  • Tenant fails to observe any obligation imposed on him by this Law or any of the terms of the tenancy contract within thirty days from the date a notice to perform such obligation is served.
  • When other government entities require demolition of the property as per urban development requirements.
  • The landlord gives notice to the tenant through a Notary Public or registered post.

Upon expiry of the tenancy contract:

  • The property owner wishes to demolish it to reconstruct it, or to add any new constructions, provided that the required permits are obtained from the competent entities.
  • The property is in a state such that it requires restoration or strict maintenance that cannot be carried out in the presence of the tenant, provided that the condition of the property is verified by a technical report issued by the Dubai Municipality.
  • The property owner wishes to take possession of it for his personal use or for use by any of his first-degree relatives, provided that the owner proves that he does not own another property for the same purpose
  • When the property owner wants to sell the Leased Real Property.


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