Tenancies of Unlimited Duration

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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)

Key changes: 

  • 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 rental property for six consecutive months, 

          and 

         - 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 Unlimited 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. 

 

 

Security of Tenure and Ending a Tenancy

A tenant who is renting for at least six months and has not been served a written notice of termination of tenancy automatically acquires security of tenure. This is referred to as a ‘Part 4 Tenancy’. A landlord can only end a tenancy that is greater than 6 months on limited grounds:

  1. Breach of obligation by the tenant;
  2. Failure by the tenant to pay rent;
  3. The property is no longer suitable for the accommodation needs of the tenant and of any persons residing with him/ her;
  4. The landlord intends to sell the property within 9 months of termination;
  5. The landlord requires the property for his/ her own occupation or occupation by a family member;
  6. The landlord intends to substantially refurbish or renovate the property.
  7. The landlord intends to change the use of the property.
  8. The Landlord intends to end the tenancy before a Further Part 4 tenancy is created for any reason

Ground 5 does not apply to AHB tenancies. Grounds 4 - 7 do not apply to Cost Rental tenancies. Ground 8 no longer applies to Tenancies of Unlimited Duration.

 

 

If a landlord or a tenant wish to end a tenancy, they must in all cases (regardless of the circumstances) serve a valid notice of termination giving the required period of notice. Landlord’s are required to submit a copy of the notice of termination to the RTB within required timelines. Please click here for information on terminating a tenancy and sample notices of termination which contain the details required to comply with the law.

Exceptions

Tenants (and licensees) of student specific accommodation and tenants in other limited circumstances are not protected by ‘Part 4 tenancy’ rights. Therefore changes introduced by Tenancies of Unlimited Duration don't impact student specific accommodation. Please click here for further details on security of tenure.

  • All new tenancies created on or after 11 June 2022 will become Tenancies of Unlimited Duration automatically.  This will happen, if the tenant has lived in the rented property for six consecutive months without a valid notice of termination being served. If these conditions are met, the tenant then has the right to stay in the property for as long the tenant wishes. The landlord can only end the tenancy on one of the permitted reasons for ending a tenancy listed above.   

  • No, not straight away but eventually all tenancies will become Tenancies of Unlimited Duration.  

    For tenancies in place prior to 11 June 2022 the old rules still apply. This means that when the current six-year cycle of the tenancy is coming to a close, the landlord can end the tenancy for any reason without having to rely on one of the permitted reasons for ending a tenancy (listed above). However, if the tenancy does not end at this point it automatically becomes a Tenancy of Unlimited Duration. 

  • Yes, but only with the landlord’s consent. A tenant can seek the consent of their landlord to have their tenancy converted to a Tenancy of Unlimited Duration without having to wait until the end of its six-year cycle. However, the landlord does not have to give their consent.  

    Where consent is not given, the legal protections that were in place prior to 11 June 2022 will continue to apply.

    The Residential Tenancies Board intends to create a template notice for landlords that they can download from its website and complete to inform tenants that the landlord consents to the tenancy becoming a tenancy of unlimited duration. The notice will include information for the landlord and tenant to explain the effect of the landlord giving such consent. The notice will be made available in the coming days on www.rtb.ie

  • By June 2028, all tenancies will have become Tenancies of Unlimited Duration. As by this date all existing six-year cycle tenancies will have ended. 

  • Yes, the landlord does not have to give a reason as to why the tenancy is ending if a tenancy has lasted less than 6 months.  

  • No, the new legislation does not impact on a tenant’s responsibilities when ending a tenancy. Any tenant wishing to end a tenancy should serve the landlord a notice of termination that has the details required by law and which gives the landlord the required period of notice. A tenant only has to give a reason to end a tenancy if the landlord has breached his/her responsibilities. Visit www.rtb.ie for information on terminating a tenancy and sample notices of termination which contain the details required to comply with the law.

  • The Residential Tenancies (Amendment) Act 2021 (the “2021 Amendment Act”) introduced Tenancies of Unlimited Duration. While the 2021 Amendment Act was enacted on 11 December 2021, sections 5 and 6 which introduce Tenancies of Unlimited Duration came into operation on 11 June 2022.

  • No. From 4 April 2022, new legislation was introduced requiring landlords to register each of their tenancies with the RTB every year. The change to Tenancies of Unlimited Duration does not alter this obligation. 

    The cost to register tenancies annually is €40 per year for private rentals, cost rentals and Student Specific Accommodation (SSA) rentals. The yearly fee for tenancies managed by Approved Housing Bodies (AHBs) will be €20 per year. More details can be found on our website at

    https://www.rtb.ie/annual-registration