From 4 April 2022, all landlords are required to register their tenancies annually with the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB).
Tenancies must be registered with the RTB upon commencement and thereafter, every year for as long as the tenancy continues. The annual registration must be made within one month of the anniversary of the date that the tenancy commenced.
There has always been a legal requirement for landlords to register their tenancies with the RTB within one month of the commencement of the tenancy. Prior to the introduction of the new legislation, the requirement to register arose only where a new tenancy was created and the obligation to re-register the tenancy only applied where a tenancy continued into a "Further Part 4 Tenancy".
For existing tenancies, from 4 April 2022, landlords are required to re-register the tenancy on the anniversary of the date that tenancy commenced on an annual basis while that tenancy continues.
Section 134 of the Residential Tenancies Act 2004, as amended, is the main legislative provision that requires landlords to register a tenancy with the RTB.
On 31 March 2022, the Minister for Housing, Darragh O'Brien, signed into law the following Statutory Instruments, thereby commencing the legal provisions requiring landlords to register their tenancies with the RTB every year.
(i) The Residential Tenancies (Amendment) Act 2019 (Commencement) Order 2022;
(ii) The Local Government Rates and Other Matters Act 2019 (Commencement) Order 2022; and
(iii) The Residential Tenancies (Amendment) Act 2021 (Commencement) Order 2022.
In addition to the 3 Commencement Orders, the Residential Tenancies (Prescribed Form) Regulations 2022 sets out the new prescribed forms that are required:
(i) Part 1 of the Schedule prescribes the form of the application that is to be provided to the RTB to effect the registration of a tenancy of a dwelling;
(ii) Part 2 of the Schedule prescribes the letters and statement to be sent by the RTB to a landlord and tenant upon the registration of a tenancy; and
(iii) Part 3 prescribes the form that is to be furnished by a landlord to the RTB where a landlord is updating the RTB regarding the tenancy.
Registration fees are reduced in view of the new annual registration requirement. The annual cost of registering a single tenancy (including Costs Rental Tenancies and Student Specific Accommodation) is €40.00 per annum. A penalty of €10.00 per month is levied for late registrations.
Where a landlord is registering up to 10 tenancies in one property at the same time they can avail of a reduced composite fee of €170.00. In circumstances where a requirement to register a second tenancy in the same property arises in a 12 month period, no fee is levied on the subsequent application to register the second tenancy.
There is a transitional period for landlords until 3 August 2022. So, if a new tenancy commences on 1 July 2022, the landlord must register the tenancy on or before 3 August 2023 and each year thereafter while the tenancy continues by 3 August every year. Late fees will not be incurred until after the transitional period expires at midnight, 3 August 2022.
On the successful registration of a tenancy, the RTB will issue a registration number (RT number) to the landlord and tenant.
The RTB will issue a reminder to landlords to re-register in advance of the yearly anniversary, but it is the responsibility of the landlord to ensure compliance with the legislation.
A landlord who fails to comply with the registration requirements is guilty of an offence which is punishable on summary conviction to a fine of up to maximum €4,000.00, or a term of imprisonment of up to 6 months, or both.
In addition, the RTB can impose fines of up to €15,000.00 and or up to €15,000.00 in costs where a landlord breaches the law.