My Landlord is Cutting off the Electricity

Question:

Dear Mario , I need you help. I am the owner of a restaurant in Tecom Dubai and opening three more branches very soon , so I hired additional staff and rented 12 rooms in one the labor accommodation in Jabel Ali Industrial Area.  The tenancy contract includes DEWA charges. I just moved in last week and I came to know that Landlord is cutting off the Electricity from 7am to 7pm !!! When I contacting the Camp Boss , he tells me it is the rule and I need to pay additional 200 aed per room per month to have regular supply of Electricity ?? In the tenancy contract states that additional 200 aed is payable if the tenant utilizes the rooms for more than one shift in 24 hrs , but this is not the case with my employees as they work in straight shifts from morning until evening. What is the solution?  To whom I approach and register my complaint as this is simply an extortion racket to extract money from the tenants . In restaurant business, weekly offs are not fixed and those who stay in accommodation on their off days are suffering as there is no power and water supply during 7 am to 7 pm !! Please revert how shall I go about in solving the issue.

Answer:

Thank you for your email.

If the tenancy agreement states the landlord can do this then unfortunately there is little that can be done. As I suspect though, you are right and this is just a scam on behalf of the owner.

If negotiation with the landlord is not possible, then your only option is to speak to the rental committee.

Water & electricity is a basic right of any tenancy and therefore interruption of this utility is not correct so I’m sure they would be able to help out the legality of this situation.

As in most cases, it is better to sort things out face to face, if possible so I would suggest you do try and speak to the landlord first before taking things further.

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.

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4 thoughts on “My Landlord is Cutting off the Electricity

  1. Dear All,

    I have a situation which is something rare. I along with a property agent visited an apartment. We liked the apartment and wished to proceed with the rental process. The supposed owner immediately asked for upfront payment. I asked my agent if it was okay to pay some money before the contract and she said that some people do this and it is not unsafe. So I transferred AED 10K to his account and got a hand written receipt. On the next working day the agent told me that the apartment is not in the name of the person but instead it is on the name of a Sheikh and he has sold this to the father of the subject person on 6 monthly installments which will finish in 2017. As the apartment is not on his name so they cannot proceed with the tenancy contract. Now the subject person is not willing to refund the money back.

    Is there a legal way to refund the money back? Please help me in this regard.

    Thanks
    Daud

  2. Hi Daud,

    Thanks for contacting us.

    Let me please emphasize a few best practices when it comes to renting a property in Dubai. Never give money up front for a property unless you are proceeding with a tenancy agreement and providing the security deposit and rental amount. Also, verify who the apartment belongs by asking for the passport copy of the landlord and a copy of the title deed. Both names should match on both documents. Lastly, make your checks payable only to the landlord or their authorized power of attorney. You should receive a detailed receipt for all monies you provide with description, property address and names of both parties involved.

    I recommend that you take all of the information that you have and go to the rental committee. They will be able to assist you and guide you further.

    I hope this helps.

  3. You have made some really good points there. I looked on the net for additional information about the issue and found most individuals will go along with your views on this site.

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