Rights and Responsibilities

Whether you are a landlord letting out accommodation or a tenant renting accommodation, you both have rights and responsibilities which are set out under legislation.

Landlord Responsibilities

What is a landlord: 

A landlord is the owner of a property who leases or rents it to another person. The person who rents the property is a tenant. The agreement between the landlord and tenant is a tenancy.

A landlord must:

  • Register their tenancy within one month of the start of the tenancy. You can register online.
  • Provide tenants with a receipt or statement or rent book that acknowledges payments made for rent and any other payments (e.g. utilities) received by the landlord
  • Make sure the property is in good condition
  • Maintain the property to the standard it was in at the start of the tenancy. 
  • Reimburse the tenants for any repairs they carried out on the structure that they requested with the landlord which the landlord did not carry out within a reasonable time
  • Insure the property
  • Pay property taxes and any other charges that the tenant is not responsible for
  • Provide the tenant with contact details (or for the agent working on the landlords behalf)
  • Give the tenant a written notice of termination at the end of the tenancy (sample notices can be found here
  • Return the tenants deposit promptly at the end of the tenancy, unless lawfully withheld. A landlord can deduct any rent arrears, outstanding bills, or the cost of damages in excess of normal wear and tear to the accommodation. If a tenant terminates a tenancy early, a landlord can deduct for losses incurred.
  • Schedule a property inspection. Landlords are encouraged to carry out regular inspections of their properties
  • Make sure there are refuse bins available for the tenant

By law, a landlord cannot refuse to rent a property to someone because of their gender, marital status, family status, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability, race, receipt of State housing payments (such as HAP), or membership of the Travelling Community.

Tenant Responsibilities 

While renting a property, a tenant is responsible for:

  • Paying their rent in full and on time
  • Keeping the property in good order and telling the landlord when repairs are needed. Tenants must give the landlord and those carrying out repairs access to fix the maintenance issues
  • Ensuring they do not harm the property e.g. drying clothes inside without proper ventilation as this may cause damp to spread
  • Allowing a landlord to carry out inspections of the property at reasonable intervals on an agreed date and at an agreed time with the tenant
  • Letting the landlord know who is living in the property. A landlord is entitled to know who is living in the property
  • Not engaging in anti-social behaviour
  • Complying with the terms of the tenancy agreement, whether written or verbal
  • Giving proper notice when they plan to end the tenancy
  • Keeping a record of repairs, payments and dealings with the landlord
  • Ensuring they don’t do anything that could affect the insurance premium on the property e.g. engaging in hazardous acts 

Landlord Rights 

The rights of a landlord are set out in the Residential Tenancies Act (2004, as amended). Under this Act, a landlord has the right to:

  • Set the rent of the property and receive the rent in full from the tenant on the date it is due. Landlords should ensure they understand the laws that apply to them when setting the rent based on where the rented dwelling is located. A Rent Pressure Zone (RPZ) is a designated area where rents cannot be increased by more than general inflation, as recorded by the Harmonised Index of the Consumer Price (HICP) which is capped at 2% per year pro rata when the HICP rate is higher. This applies to new and existing tenancies (unless an exemption is being applied). Landlords are strongly advised to use the RPZ rent calculator located here. Landlords must also show their rent calculations and how they arrived at the figure they are seeking to their new tenan
  • End the tenancy in the first six months without reason if there is no fixed term lease in place. After six months, a landlord can terminate a tenancy for certain reasons. 
  • Be told who is living in the property, and decide whether to allow the tenant to sub-let or assign the property (this does not apply to Approved Housing Body landlords)
  • Be informed about any repairs needed and be given reasonable access to fix them 
  • Refer any disputes to the RTB

Tenant Rights 

Tenants rights are set out in the Residential Tenancies Act (2004, as amended). Under this Act, a tenant has the right to:

  • A property that is in good condition – this means that it must be structurally sound, have hot and cold water, and adequate heating. The electricity and gas supply must be in good repair and all appliances must be working
  • Privacy – the landlord can only enter the property with the tenants permission, unless every attempt has been made to contact the tenant
  • A receipt or statement or rent book that acknowledges payments made for rent and any other payments (e.g. utilities) made to the landlord
  • Be told about any increase in rent
  • Be able to contact the landlord or their authorised agent at any reasonable time
  • Be paid back monies from the landlord for any required repairs the tenant  carried out on the property that they asked the landlord to fix but which they did not carry out within a reasonable timeframe
  • A valid notice of termination before the end of a tenancy
  • Refer a dispute to the RTB


For a full overview of both landlord and tenant rental rights and responsibilities, please read the Good Landord Tenant Guide in the hyperlink.