My landlord (a large developer) sent an invitation of rental renewal for our 3 bedroom apartment in Layan with more than 90 days notice via courier. It contained a pro-forma contract which stated the new rent as the maximum that is allowed under the rental calculator citing the relevant law of 2013. However it did not stipulate the actual new amount anywhere in writing. Now that less than 90 days (renewal due Feb 1, 2015) remains and they have not stated the actual amount of new rent, can they legally increase my rent, which will be by 15% (DH12,000 increase) according to the rental calculator?
We have been in this place for 5 years and got in when it was a reasonable price and now I feel the new rent is unfair as it is bench marked against all the recent newcomers which have obviously paid more in recent years. I want to challenge them on the fact they did not state any fixed figure in writing with more than 90 days notice?
Thank you for your email.
It is the responsibility of both parties (landlords and tenants) to get in touch with each other 90 days prior to the expiration of the tenancy agreement of any changes to the contract.
The RERA rent calculator is updated every quarter and therefore cannot always be so accurate that the displayed rental figure will be the same at a given renewal date in the future. The landlord is therefore correct to give you the notice that the rent will be increased but the actual amount will be determined closer to the renewal date and this is what he appears to have done.
I honestly believe you will be fighting a losing battle if you decide to challenge this. Remember that the calculator is based on the average rental rate not market rates. The rental figures therefore, do go up but also down given market conditions.
I hope this has helped.
The above answer has been brought to you by Mario Volpi who is the Managing Director of Ocean View Real Estate in Dubai. Mario has 30 years of property industry experience in Dubai and London.
The advice provided in our columns does not constitute legal advice and is provided for information only. Readers are encouraged to seek appropriate independent legal advice.