As a landlord to an Irish property you are legally required, under The Residential Tenancies Act 2004, to register your private residential tenancies with the Private Residential Tenancies Board (PRTB), which was established in 2004. The three main functions of the PRTB are as follows:
- The maintenance of a Register of Private Rental Tenancies
- The provision of a Dispute Resolution Service in the event of a landlord/tenant dispute
- Research into the private rental sector.
The Dispute Resolution Service provided by the PRTB is a quasi judicial process and has replaced the requirement for court proceedings in the majority of landlord/tenant disputes. Case outcomes are decided by independent adjudicators and mediators; however if a party is unhappy with the outcome they may appeal the case to a 3 member PRTB Tribunal, for a fee.
While the PRTB have been in operation for a number of years, many landlords remain unaware of their requirements to register with the PRTB, which has implications for their personal tax affairs.
We have assisted a number of our clients in completing their PRTB registrations and have outlined below some of the key questions which we have address for our clients:
1. Who is required to register with the PRTB?
If you are a landlord of a private residential property you are required to register with the PRTB. Tenancies must be registered within one month of the date of commencement of the tenancy. For example, if your tenancy commences on 23rd March 2015 you must register the tenancy by 22nd April 2015. If the application is not completed by this date it is deemed to be late and will incur late filing fees.
In some cases landlords have appointed a property management agent to secure tenants and manage aspects of the tenancy. Under these circumstances the responsibility to register with the PRTB still rests with the landlord.
2. What are the Registration Fees?
The current registration fees are as follows:
|PRTB Application Received||Amount|
|Within one month of commencement date of tenancy||€90|
|After one month from commencement date of tenancy||€180|
|Multiple tenancy application (see below)||€375|
Where a landlord is registering for multiple tenancies in one building at the same time and the application is received within one month of the commencement date of the first tenancy, then a composite fee of €375 will be applied. If however a multiple registration is late, the composite fee will no longer be available and the late fee of €180 will apply to each tenancy being registered.
You are also required to provide the PRTB with updates on the tenancy such as changes in rent or if some of the tenants are replaced by new tenants (with at least one tenant remaining); however, no fee is payable on such updates.
3. How often must I register with the PRTB?
Each new tenancy must be registered with the PRTB. Once a tenancy is registered it will remain in existence for the duration of the tenancy, subject to a maximum of four years. After a period of four years the tenancy must be re-registered with the PRTB. Such a re-registration is referred to as a “Further Part 4 Tenancy” and it is the obligation of the landlord to ensure such a re-registration is completed.
Taking the above example again, if a tenancy commenced on 23rd March 2015 and continued in existence for four years then on the 23rd March 2019 the tenancy would have expired. In this instance the landlord has one month from 23rd March 2019 to re-register the tenancy and pay the standard fee of €90. If the tenancy is not re-registered by 23rd March 2019 the late filing fees of €180 will be applied.
4. What dwellings are exempt from PRTB?
The following dwellings are exempt from registration with the PRTB:
- Business lettings.
- Holiday lettings.
- Formerly rent-controlled dwellings or long occupation lease tenancies.
- A dwelling let by or to a public authority or voluntary housing body.
- A dwelling in which the landlord is also resident (rent a room).
- A dwelling in which the spouse, parent or child of the landlord is resident and there is no written lease or tenancy agreement.
- A dwelling that is occupied rent free.
- A dwelling that is available to rent but not yet let to a tenant.
5. What are the implications if I do not register with the PRTB?
As outlined above it is a legal requirement for landlords to register tenancies with the PRTB. If you are convicted of failing to comply with a notice from the PRTB you may be subject to a fine of up to €4,000 and/or 6 months in prison. A further penalty of €250 for each day of non-registration may be applied. In cases where a conviction has been granted, the PRTB have also sought reimbursement of costs.
Income Tax Implications
In addition to the above penalties, if you have not registered with the PRTB you will not be eligible to claim a deduction against your rental income for the mortgage interest paid on the property. Many landlords are unaware of this restriction which can have significant implications on their Income Tax Returns.
Exclusion from the Dispute Resolution Service
If a landlord is not registered with the PRTB they are excluded from availing of the PRTB’s Dispute Resolution Service. However, your tenant can avail of this service, even if you are not registered with the PRTB.
6. What details are required to be provided as part of the registration?
The following is a summary of the details which are required to complete your registration with the PRTB:
- The address of the rented property.
- The name, address and PPS number of the landlord (or CRO number if the landlord is a company).
- The number of tenants, along with their names and PPS numbers.
- A description of the property, including the number of bed spaces available.
- The approximate floor space in square metres.
- The date of commencement of the tenancy.
- Details of the rent and how often it is payable.
- Details of the local authority in which the property is located.
- The term of the lease if it is a fixed-term lease.
- Details of a sub-let, if applicable.
- The Building Energy Rating (BER).
- Details of any property management company or authorised agent appointed.
While the PRTB registration requires personal details, such details will not be made available under the public register. The details available on the public register relate to the property address, type, floor space and number of bed spaces available. To check if your property is registered with the PRTB you can view the public register which is available on the PRTB’s website.
As a landlord it is important that you remain compliant with the PRTB at all times. While the penalties on conviction for non compliance are important, the inability to deduct mortgage interest paid against rental income could have significant implications for both your past and future Income Tax Returns.
If you have any further queries in relation to the above or would like assistance in completion your PRTB application please do not hesitate to contact a member of our team.