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When everyone has a home

Housing advice for Northern Ireland

Tenant Rights

Landlords in Northern Ireland are not obliged to give tenants a tenancy agreement. However, it’s a good idea to ask for a written tenancy agreement so both you and your landlord fully understand your obligations and your rights. A tenancy agreement is a legally binding contract. Once you have signed this document, you have committed to pay the rent for the full term of the contract.

Secure Housing Executive (NIHE) and housing association tenants can apply for a transfer to a different NIHE or housing association property. You can ask for a transfer anywhere in the UK and tenants from England, Scotland & Wales can transfer to properties in Northern Ireland.

You need to know whether you are going to be a tenant who will be protected in law or a licensee who has very few rights in law. It's important that you understand your legal status in your new home.

Legally, your landlord or the agent must give you a rent book. There is certain information which must be contained in this document, including your basic rights and obligations. If you don't get a rent book, you can complain to your local council.

Your landlord must be very careful when trying to evict your from a protected tenancy. Unless the landlord can prove that certain criteria apply to your tenancy, any eviction could be illegal.

Getting repairs carried out can be a messy business. If the interior of your home is damaged by contractors carrying out repair or improvement work you could be entitled to compensation.

Вашите права могат да варират в зависимост от вида на наемането и споразумението, което имате с вашия наемодател. Въпреки това има няколко основни области, където законът ви дава права. Вашето наемно споразумение може да разшири вашите основни жилищни права, но не може да ограничи правата ви. Ако наемодателят ви е отказал някои от тези права, свържете се с агенция за съвети.

Secure Housing Executive (NIHE) and housing association tenants have a right to buy the home they live in, as long as they and the property are eligible for the scheme.

Victoria, a housing adviser with Housing Rights recently graduated from University. We've asked her what ten things she wishes she'd known when she started out as a private renter. 

Your rights as a Housing Assocation tenant should be explained in your tenancy agreement and your tenant handbook.  Housing associations are regulated by the Department of Communities in Northern Ireland and registered housing associations have to comply with the guidelines set out by this government department. 

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