Contract will renew on same terms if Abu Dhabi landlord and tenant do not communicate with 60 days' notice

My contract mentions that: “Prior to the end of lease period the tenant has to submit in sixty days, written notice that he is willing to either vacate the premises or renew the contract.” Abu Dhabi Executive Council Decision No 32 for 2012, says that: “In the event the landlord does not wish to renew […]

My contract mentions that: “Prior to the end of lease period the tenant has to submit in sixty days, written notice that he is willing to either vacate the premises or renew the contract.”

Abu Dhabi Executive Council Decision No 32 for 2012, says that: “In the event the landlord does not wish to renew the lease, or wishes to amend the conditions of the lease, the landlord only has to notify the tenant in writing: two months prior to the date of the lease’s expiry in the case of residential properties”.

My question is: if the tenant wishes to continue, is it the tenant’s responsibility to inform the owner prior to the end of the lease period, or does the owner need to inform the tenant in writing? CS, Abu Dhabi

If your specific tenancy contract stipulates that the tenant has to inform the landlord of his intentions to renew or not by giving 60 days’ notice then this is what needs to be adhered to.

As per the law, if two months’ notice passes without communication from either party, the contract will automatically renew under the same terms and conditions as before. If this occurs, then neither party can alter the contract after this and the landlord cannot refuse to renew the contract.

For clear communication and understanding, it is therefore good practice for either party to inform the other that they wish to renew or not (in the case of the tenant) or for the landlord to confirm he/she is happy to renew or not. I suppose the answer to your question lies with whoever has any particular need to alter the agreement as to who should inform in writing first.

My rent expired last April but my landlord (the new owner of the house) gave me an eviction notice dated and issued on September 1 2015. When my contract expired on April 30 this year, he decided to give me a four-month contract until September 1, which would take me up to the end of the 12-month eviction notice period. He also increased the rent for the remaining four months by 5 per cent without informing me 90 days before the expiry of my lease. As I have not been able to find a suitable place to move into, I have asked him for a one-month rent extension and he agreed to let me stay until September 30. But, again, he increased the rent by 15 per cent for the month of September 2016. The landlord then told me that the market is down and that when I leave he is likely to rent the property at a much higher rent. If I wait until I have evidence in October/November that he has indeed let it out to gain a higher rent return, could I then take him to the rent committee? NC, Dubai

Just to clarify my understanding, your current landlord is the new owner of the property you are residing in, having bought it from your previous landlord some time before September 2015. The new owner then sent you an eviction notice (presumably via notary public or registered mail, if not then the notice is invalid) for reasons of either wishing to sell or wishing to use the property for own use or use by immediate next of kin.

If the above is correct then he will not be able to relet the property to another tenant for a period of two years from the date of your eviction. If after you move out you subsequently find out that he has relet the property, you will be entitled to file a complaint at the rental committee. The actual level of compensation (if any) will be determined by the judge, as this is never set on precedent.

With reference to the rental increases you have had to succumb to for each extension period of your initial contract, these are not allowed as the owner has not given you the statutory 90-day notice period before the expiration of the agreement. Any increases in rent can only be allowed if the correct notice has been given and if the Rera rental calculator states this is allowed.

My landlord has sent notice for eviction via recorded mail and we have received it. However, there is no reason for the eviction on the notice. As the landlord needs to have one of five reasons for eviction, is the eviction notice valid without the reason stated? Can we ignore this notice? MB, Dubai

As per the letter of the law, any vacating letter sent does have to have a valid reason for the eviction, therefore your notice is not valid. Whether you now choose to ignore it is up to you. I guess this depends on the kind of relationship you have with your landlord.

Mario Volpi is a real estate professional who has worked in the industry for the past 31 years in London and Dubai. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and they do not reflect in any way those of the institutions to which he is affiliated. It does not constitute legal advice and is provided for information only. Please send any questions to mariovolpi64@gmail.com.

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