Sharjah tenants can stay put with no extra charges

ABU DHABI, 6th February, 2015 (WAM)–Landlords and real estate agents of residential and commercial buildings are not allowed to levy extra fees at the time of renewal of leasing contracts.

Omar Al Sharji, Director-General of Customer services Department at Sharjah Municipality, said they have received several complaints from tenants about charges by real-estate offices at the time of renewal.

He said the Sharjah tenancy regulatory law which looks into the relation between tenants and landlords is very efficient and protects both parties. The law protects tenants from rent hikes for the first three years, after which hikes are based on the law that protects the rights of both tenants and landlords.

According to Khaleej Times, the tenants must not pay any extra amount to real estate agents, building managements and landlords at the time of renewing the contract. “These charges are not stipulated by law and it only adds to the financial burden of tenants”.

Al Sharji urged tenants to register a complaint at the municipality in case they are charged extra. “Tenants can go to any typing centre and make out a complaint letter and hand it over to the tenancy dispute department located in Sharjah Industrial Area 5. Lodging complaints is free, and residents are free to air their grievances on rents”, he said.

He pointed out that it is the lack of awareness of tenancy laws that leads to violations by both tenants and landlords, urging the public to read the law carefully in order to know their rights to avoid violation and protect their rights. The law is posted in the Municipality websites in both English and Arabic.

Al Sharji attributed the increase of tenancy disputes to lack of knowledge about the tenancy law. As stipulated by the law, tenants must lodge complaints before the contract expires.

He urged the public to attest their contracts of all types, residential, industrial and commercial, to protect their rights.