Over the last decade or so, the United Arab Emirates has enjoyed enormous growth and development, particularly in the housing market. Right now, the property market in Dubai and the UAE is booming, and that trend is only going to continue for the foreseeable future. If you’re a landlord or are thinking of becoming a landlord in the UAE, you may have read conflicting reports regarding issuing tenants notice to vacate a property in the UAE. If you’re looking to be brought up to speed, you’ve come to the right place.
Here’s a better look at the rules regarding issuing a tenant notice to vacate a property in the UAE.
When can a landlord ask a tenant to leave?
Despite the fact that the landlord owns the property, tenants still have rights in the UAE as they would anywhere else, and landlords cannot just ask tenants to leave out of the blue, for no apparent reasons. Typically you’ll find that the most common reasons for landlords asking tenants to leave is so that they can recover their property for their own personal use, or so that they can sell the property.
Selling or residing in the property
As the property owner, the time may come when you decide that you no longer want the responsibility of letting out the property and working as a landlord, and so you might rather just sell the property outright instead. Another potential reason could be that the landlords themselves would like to now reside in the property that they own, or, allow a family member to live there instead. In both instances, the landlord will need to provide the tenant with a minimum of 12 months’ notice.
How must this notice be provided?
Contrary to what some people may say, a landlord can’t just send their tenant a text telling them that they have 12 months to vacate the property, nor can they do it verbally. The notice must be issued in writing, by registered mail, or via the notary public. If there is a dispute, it is a legal requirement that the landlord can provide proof that the notice was indeed issued legally and above board, and that the tenant did, in fact, receive it.
How can the notice be served?
Providing that there are no unique terms in the tenancy agreement that dictates otherwise, the 12 months’ notice can be provided via the landlord to the tenant at any time during the tenancy. As stated, the notice is a minimum of 12 months, and to make things a little clearer and more transparent, the notice should also clearly state the date in which you are requesting the tenant to vacate the property by.
How about renewals?
If you, the landlord, are issuing the tenant with the notice within the final 3 months of the current tenancy agreement, you are legally required to provide the tenant with the option of renewing the tenancy for another full year, and to vacate via the new expiry date. If the tenant is to receive the notice before the 90 days before the current lease expires, you are then within your rights to request that the lease be renewed up until the end of the 12 months’ notice.
Whilst there will hopefully be no disputes, in the event of a dispute being filed, either via the tenant or via the landlord, cases can be filed at the Rental Dispute Centre. In the event of a dispute, it is best to have as much paperwork and legal documentation as possible, including proof of future plans to reside in, or sell, the property.