The Private Tenancies (NI) Order 2006 (Article 33) requires properties built before 1 January 1945, whose tenancies commence after 1 April 2007, to have a fitness inspection carried out, unless they already have a certificate of fitness in place or the property is exempt.
A property which has recently undergone a full renovation and/or refurbishment will still require a fitness inspection if one original wall remains.
A tenant may also apply for certificate of fitness, if there is a Certificate of Fitness in effect and they are of the opinion the property they live in is no longer fit to live in.
The legislation aims to:
- Provide a better standard of accommodation within the private rented sector in Northern Ireland
- Allow landlords to maximise rent
- Ensure protected tenants retain their security of tenure.
A property is exempt if:
- A renovation grant was paid by Northern Ireland Housing Executive within the last 10 years
- An HMO grant was paid by the NIHE within the last 10 years
- The dwelling is currently registered as an HMO with the NIHE
- A regulated rent certificate was issued by district council within the last 10 years.
Properties will be inspected by Environmental Health officers against a Fitness Standard.
Contact Environmental Health About Private Tenancies.
Tel: 03000 132 132
Other Important Legislation Relating To Private Tenancies
All landlords must register in accordance with the Landlord Registration Scheme
All tenancy deposits taken on or after the 1 April 2013 must be protected with an approved Tenancy Deposit Scheme administrator.
Private Tenancies Advice for Tenancies
Useful Websites for additional information:
Housing Advice NI
Department For Communities NI
Landlord and Tenant Obligations
Information on Harassment and Unlawful Eviction (including Notice to Quit)
A landlord must provide a Rent Book to their tenant.
Template for a rent book
A landlord must issue tenancy terms for tenancies commencing after 1 April 2007.
Model Tenancy Agreement