This first blog in the series will include details of how to make sure that your rental contract is compliant with the Residential Leases Act. Every rental contract must contain the seven essential requirements listed below in order for the registration process of the contract with the Housing Authority to be conducted as smoothly and efficiently as possible.
Also please remember to get your landlord to sign Arms Form N - Verification of Pending Dues. This will zero the Arms bill so that you will not pay for the bills of previous occupants of the rental property. Please click on the link below for a copy of Arms Form N:
|File Size:||1182 kb|
If the landlord refuses to register the contract and the tenant cannot register it because it is missing one of the seven essential requirements, then there is the option of reporting the tenancy. This will mean fines / prosecution in a criminal and / or civil court of law for the landlord plus the Housing Authority fixing the rent for the tenant at below market rent rates. The Housing Authority will first have to establish that the tenant is indeed living in the rental property.
One final note. Please do not be surprised if your rental contract contains clauses which are forbidden clauses, listed under Article 7 of the Residential Leases Act. The Housing Authority has limited resources. It registered circa 30 000 rental contracts in the first year of the Residential Leases Act, and therefore is unable to check the minute detail of every clause of every contract. These clauses will hopefully die a natural death as more and more letting agents / landlords / tenants learn more about the intricacies of the 2020 Residential Leases Act. Rest assured, however, that these clauses are completely without effect. Therefore you can ignore them completely and with no ill effect. Also, please rest assured that the Residential Leases Act and the Maltese Civil Code trump any clause in any rental contract, no matter what any letting agent or landlord may tell you.