Late Registration

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‘Anon Tenant’ writes:

I saw your post about the tiny bedsit in D8 and I decided to check if it was registered with the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB)..

It turned out that the property was registered in 2013. Registrations lasts for four years, so it is expired right now.

Following the expiration of registration, the RTB will send a letter to the landlord reminding them to renew it, if they intended to rent the property out again.

When I asked the RTB person what could be done about this, he said that unless I was the tenant, I couldn’t raise an enforcement claim through the RTB.

And if I was a tenant, would I raise this issue? I don’t think so. Especially when I could be given 28 days notice to quit for any reason in the first 6 months of tenancy.

I have checked other properties listed on Daft before, and they too were not listed with the RTB, but it seems crazy to me that properties can be advertised without meeting the minimum of being a registered property. (Never mind meeting minimum standards, but sin scéal eile.)

No wonder the Government can’t give accurate housing figures when they don’t even know what’s being rented.

Earlier: Crying Plans

29 thoughts on “Late Registration

  1. Brother Barnabas

    You don’t register a property, you register a tenancy. So if it’s on Daft, which means it isn’t tenanted, of course it isn’t registered.
    Jeez Mareez,

        1. Cian

          It’s not available for rent until 20th October.

          Perhaps I should have said: “If it has been rented in the last 4 years, and the landlord didn’t inform RTB that is was no longer rented, it should be on the registry”

          1. Brother Barnabas

            I think landlords are required to inform the RTB when a tenancy ends – and would have an incentive to do so if it ends within 6 months because they don’t then have to pay for the new registration (maximum of two charges in any 12-month period, I think). Tenancies in properties likes this often only last a few months.

  2. Cian

    1. You don’t register a property, you register a tenancy (e.g. person X is renting location Z) – so it doesn’t have to be registered before letting.
    2. if after 4 years you still have the same tenant, you need to re-register that tenancy with RTB
    3. There is no obligation for the landlord/tenant to tell RTB if the tenancy is ended (although can be inferred if, say, a year after one tenancy is registered a different person is registered to that same address – the original tenancy is terminated)
    4. The government can’t give accurate housing figures because there is no requirement (under law) for everyone to inform the government where they reside. If you feel this should happen then talk to your TD to get this changed.
    5. Inspections do happen, there were 16,771 in 2015. These are performed by the local authorities – not RTB. See http://www.housing.gov.ie/sites/default/files/attachments/g1-private_inspections-annual_1.xlsx

    1. Ultan

      Fair enough Cian, you obviously know the law in this case. I’ve a few questions:
      – so if the landlord has had more than one tenant in the four years since registration, they don’t have to register again?
      – you say that the landlord doesn’t have to let the RTB know if the tenancy ends. Do they not also have an obligation to let the RTB know that they are renting to another tenant?
      – The post is obviously about the rental market, which the Government raises taxes from, so your comment “no requirement (under law) for everyone to inform the government where they reside” is moot. Also, if you don’t have an address, how do you interact with the state?
      – are there inspections of unregistered tenancies?

      1. Cian

        1. No. The landlord should register each tenancy. If new people moves in, it is a new tenancy and it needs to be registered.
        2. They don’t need to tell RTB if the tenancy has ended (and the house is now empty/sold/being used by the landlord). The do have to tell RTB if there are new tenants (see 1).
        3. the OP mentioned “accurate housing figures” I took that to mean everyone. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
        The government (through Dept Revenue) raises taxes from landlords, not ‘the housing market’ – I don’t know if RTB are involved with this?
        4. You can request an inspection from your Local Authority – this covers propertied not covered by RTB (e.g. holiday homes) http://www.housing.gov.ie/sites/default/files/migrated-files/en/Publications/DevelopmentandHousing/Housing/FileDownLoad%2C33422%2Cen.pdf

        1. Cian

          #4 You can request an inspection from your Local Authority regardless of it being registered. the LA also inspects properties not covered by RTB

          1. Brother Barnabas

            Is there any way to report non-registration? I think that only comes to light if the tenant and landlord have an issue – and the tenant refers the dispute to the RTB. Big flaw is that there’s no actual punishment for not registering – all the landlord has to do is pay the late registration fee, which isn’t too onerous at all.

          2. Cian

            Judge John O’Neill convicted Ms Maguire of an offence under Section 144(3) of the Residential Tenancies Act 2004 and imposed a fine of €1,000.00. Judge O’Neill further made an Order for costs against Ms Maguire in favour of the RTB in the amount of €2,500 plus VAT.

            In the second case Andrew Oliver Fleming of 103 Tymon Crescent, Old Bawn, Tallaght, Dublin 24 was convicted for failing to register a tenancy at 103 Tymon Crescent, Old Bawn, Tallaght, Dublin 24. Judge O’Neill imposed a fine of €1,000 and made an Order for costs in favour of the RTB in the amount of €2,500 plus VAT.

            https://www.rtb.ie/media-research/news-centre/latest-news/2016/05/13/two-landlords-receive-criminal-convictions-and-8-000-in-fines-and-costs-for-failing-to-register-their-tenancies-with-the-residential-tenancies-board

          3. Ultan

            Because the rental market is dysfunctional, and it’s harder to fix it if people don’t know the true nature of the market. Also, the RTB relies on the Tenant to enforce RTB rules, which puts the onus on the weakest person in the scenario to enforce it’s rules, and that’s messed up.

          4. Cian

            “Also, the RTB relies on the Tenant to enforce RTB rules”
            Three things:
            1. Is that not true everywhere? if you assaulted someone I can’t press charges – you have to: would you say “the Garda rely on the victims to enforce the law”. Head down to you local NDLS office and tell them that your mate ‘Bobby’ doesn’t show his “L” plates when he drives and he just has a learner permit..
            2. Do you have any reason to think RTB don’t actively pursue non registrations?
            3. RTB have access to Daft (I assume :-) so are able to look at these properties and check that they are registered? If they don’t have the time/inclination to check these, why would they have the time/inclination to follow up if you reported the same property?

        2. Ultan

          You can’t report non registration unless you’re the tenant, and in the current climate, who’d do that?

    1. mildred st. meadowlark

      You’ve a veritable wealth of info on the property market, Cian. It’s very interesting.

    1. Cian

      Why do you say that?

      Prior to PRTB it was the courts that decided on tenancy cases and they were slow and expensive.
      Now RTB are fast and cheap.

        1. Cian

          RTB act within the law, and they can say that the landlord has served a legal notice and the tenants must leave.
          However the tenants can ignore this. RTB don’t have the authority to send around some heavies to actually kick them out.

          But this is the same as any other court. You can ignore a court order.

  3. Peter Dempsey

    Some posters here and on Rabble absolutely despise middle class professionals and will criticise them at every opportunity.

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