Tenancies of Unlimited Duration
From 11 June 2022, Tenancies of Unlimited Duration will be introduced into law. This change provides more security of tenure for tenants. It means that, after six months living in a tenancy, the tenant will have a right to remain in the property for an unlimited duration. This is subject to the tenant upholding their rental obligations and the landlord’s right to end the tenancy in accordance with the Residential Tenancies Act 2004 (RTA).
A landlord no longer has this right of termination every 6 years. A tenancy can now only end where a landlord serves a valid notice relying on formal termination grounds as set out in the RTA.
All new tenancies created on or after 11 June 2022 will automatically become Tenancies of Unlimited Duration when:
- the tenant has lived in the rental property for six consecutive months,
- a valid notice of termination has not been served.
Tenancies already in existence before 11 June 2022, will continue under the existing security of tenure rules until the end of the current six-year cycle of the tenancy. The landlord is still entitled to end these tenancies at the end of the six-year period without providing a reason. However, once the current cycle has ended, they will become Tenancies of Unlimited Duration and may only be terminated under the specific reasons for ending a tenancy. If a tenancy is ended, any new tenancy created will become a tenancy of indefinite duration based on the above requirements.
If, on the 11 June 2022 a tenancy is already in existence, Landlords and Tenants are encouraged to and can agree to switch from a six-year cycle to a Tenancy of Unlimited Duration.
What has changed?
Prior to 11 June 2022, once a 'Part 4 Tenancy' existed, the tenant was entitled to live in the tenancy in six-year cycles. Unless the tenancy is terminated in accordance with the law at the end of that 6-year period, the tenant will have acquired ‘further Part 4 tenancy’ rights – the right to stay in the property for another 6-year period. These 6-year cycles will have continued unless the tenancy was validly terminated.
As set out above, once the six-year cycle was coming to a close, the landlord was entitled to end a tenancy for any reason (the requirement is that the notice of termination is served prior to the end of the six years and the notice period must expire on or after then end of the ‘further Part 4’ tenancy). If the landlord wanted to continue with the tenancy after six years, it would enter a new six-year cycle (known as a further Part 4) and the same rules applied.
After the 11 June 2022, the six-year cycle has been replaced by Tenancies of Unlimited Duration. The landlord can no longer end the tenancy at the end of a six-year cycle for any reason.