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General News of Wednesday, 29 April 2020

Source: 3 News

Landlords can’t arbitrarily determine rents – Rent Control officer

Senior Rent Manager at the Rent Control Office in the Ashanti Region, Paul Kofi Appiah has revealed that before anyone could rent out a room, it is the duty of the Rent Control Department to determine the pricing based on size and location of the house.

He was quick to add that before a Rent Control officer could do that, one has to request what he called an application for assessment.

The application, he said, would give the green light for the officer to visit the house in ascertaining size of the room as well as inspecting washroom and toilet facilities among other required amenities in order to determine the price as the law stipulates.

Mr Kofi Appiah disclosed this to host Nana Yaw Opare on Yensempa on Onua FM on Wednesday, April 29, 2020, adding that landlords have no right to fix or regulate price of rooms for rent or lease.

Access to water and electricity in the area, he said, are also considered and factored into the determination of the price.

The Rent Control Manager re-echoed that landlords are not permitted to charge more than six months’ rent advance and thereafter.

A tenant is fully protected by the law in this case and should take the matter up with the Rent Control Board, which will ensure that the proper thing is done, he added.

“A tenant is as well protected by the Act to seek redress if a landlord arbitrarily increases the rent after the initial six months’ rent advance.”

Landlords can increase the rent fee after two years and that is only when he or she has added value to the room and the increment must be moderate, he pointed out.

The situation whereby landlords are failing in adherence to the Rent Act and sometimes demand up to two years of rent advance, Kofi Appiah explained, is as a result of high demand for accommodation, especially in the big cities.

In spite of this, the Rent Control Department has entreated the general public to always come to them in applying for the application for assessment to help resolve all rent-related issues.

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