ROYAL Decree 7/2019 – Tenants protection.
The majority of letting contracts for domestic properties or commercial premises in Spain are governed by the Urban Letting Contracts regulation (Ley de Arrendamientos Urbanos).
This law was enacted in 1994 and although it is still in force, it has been modified on numerous occasions with the latest revision carried out by the Royal Decree 7/2019, of March 1 with regards to urgent measures regarding dwellings and Letting contracts.
This last revision has meant important changes in the conditions of the lettings, and we would like to explain some of these important changes in this article.
In the first place, the minimum term that a tenant has the right to remain in the property has changed in respect of the letting of main residencies.
This period has increased from three years to five years. In addition, in case no term has been stated in the contract, the minimum term will also be five years.
However in a situation where the owner of the property is a company, these terms have been increased to seven years with the explanation that these changes are to give the tenant greater security and stability.
Also in the previous regulation, an owner who did not wish to extend the contract had to notify the tenant one month in advance. This term has now been increased to four months in advance, giving the tenant a better opportunity to find new accommodation in a reasonable period of time.
Conversely when a tenant does not wish to continue with the contract and intends to leave the property, the term increases from one month to two months’ notice.
A maximum limit has also been established for deposits and guarantees which are now equivalent to the cost of three monthly rentals, which means that only two monthly rentals may be required as an extra guarantee, to be added to the one month rent deposit required by law.
One of the most important modification that has been made, concerns the execution of evictions and in this case, the rule that modifies the Royal Decree is not the Urban Letting Law, but the Civil Procedure Law.
According to this modification, when an owner tries to evict a tenant or other persons who may be occupying their property, the Court may inform the defendant of the possibility of approaching social services, to see whether they can be considered to be in a situation of social vulnerability.
If the social services department accepts that a situation of vulnerability could exist, the Court may suspend the execution of the eviction for a maximum period of one month, or three months if the owner of the property in question is a company.
In the case of a rental contract being entered into prior to the establishment of these new regulations, the rules applicable to the contract will be the ones which were in force when the contract was signed, so, the rules will continue to apply with the conditions established under the previous law.
If you are the owner of a rented property, want to rent one out now or you are a tenant who may have doubts about your rights and obligations, contact us and we will help you.
The information provided in this article is not intended to be legal advice, but merely conveys general information related to legal issues.
Carlos Baos (Colegiado 5756)
Abogado / Lawyer
C/Diana 19, 2º D, 03700 Denia (Alicante) Spain Tel. +34 966-426-185
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