Information for Landlords
The RAS/Leasing Initiatives were introduced to cater for the accommodation needs of persons in receipt of rent supplement and who have a long-term housing need. The scheme is administered by Mayo County Council and is intended to provide an additional source of good quality rented accommodation for eligible persons to enhance the response of local authorities meeting the long-term housing need.
What are the main features of RAS/Leasing?
The local authority will enter contractual arrangements with accommodation providers to secure the medium to long-term availability of private rental accommodation. While different contract types may be entered, they will have the following features:
- The local authority will pay the full rent to the landlord on behalf of the tenant.
- The Residential Tenancies Acts 2004-2015 will govern the relationship between the landlord and the tenant.
- The landlord must be tax compliant (tax clearance certificate must be renewed annually and contracts will be produced in the name that appears on the cert)
- The property must meet minimum standards for private rental accommodation, as determined by the local authority.
- The landlord must register the tenancy with the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB)
- Building Energy Rating (BER) Cert will be required for each property.
What does RAS/Leasing involve?
RAS/Leasing involves a three-way relationship
- The local authority and the landlord
- The landlord and the tenant
- The tenant and the local authority
The local authority will seek to enter a contractual arrangement with the accommodation provider to make housing available for an agreed term. The terms of this contract will be negotiated between the two parties. The accommodation may be an existing property or new build. The local authority will guarantee the rent on behalf of the tenant and will undertake to make the full payment directly to the landlord.
The local authority will then nominate a tenant to the accommodation who signs a residential tenancy agreement with the landlord. The nominee can be an existing tenant of a property. The local authority will be party to this agreement as guarantor of the rent.
Finally, the RAS recipient and the local authority agree that the local authority will make payments to the landlord on the recipient's behalf.
What Contractual Arrangements will exist between the Landlord/Agent and LA?
These will fall broadly into three types of arrangements.
- Availability type arrangements between landlords and LA to secure medium to long-term availability of accommodation (with local authority having nomination rights to accommodation)
- Tenancy by Tenancy arrangements with landlords to meet short-term accommodation requirements (local authority guarantees rent payment only for term that a specified tenancy is in existence);
- Long-term PPP/Part V type arrangements between developers and local authorities to secure long-term availability of accommodation.
Landlord & tenant relationship and responsibilities of landlord
The main " landlord and tenant" relationship remains between the property owner and the tenant. The local authority acts as agent on behalf of the tenant.
The landlord is responsible for:
- Insurance: property, landlord's contents and public liability
- Routine maintenance / repair and replacement of equipment
- Dealing with breaches of the tenant's obligations to the landlord should they arise
How will rent levels be determined?
Rent levels will be determined by negotiation between the landlord and the local authority and will reflect local market conditions. However, local authorities will seek a reduction of at least 8% in return for the various benefits to the landlords entering these schemes
What benefits has RAS/Leasing for landlords?
The landlord will receive their rent monthly in advance directly from the local authority for the duration of the contract; there will be no need for rent collection from tenants leading to administrative savings for landlords.
Landlords who rent to tenants in receipt of social housing supports, such as RAS/ Leasing and Rent Supplement, may avail of increased tax relief under a new scheme from 1 January 2016. The new scheme will allow property owners to claim 100 per cent relief on their mortgage interest, as an expense against rental income.
To qualify, the landlord must undertake to make the accommodation available to qualifying tenants for a minimum of three years, and the undertaking must be registered with the Residential Tenancy Board. Further information is also available from the Revenue Commissioners on www.revenue.ie.
Deposits and Damage to Property
No deposits will be paid under these schemes as a contractual arrangement will exist between the landlord and the local authority. However, where damage is caused to property, which is above routine wear and tear, the housing authority may be willing to guarantee the equivalent of up to one month's rent towards the cost of repair/replacement.
Repair & Leasing Scheme
One of the key components of the Rebuilding Ireland Action Plan for Housing and Homelessness is a new scheme called the Repair and Leasing Scheme. This scheme targets vacant properties as a possible source of social housing and provides property owners with an income stream that may be otherwise unavailable. The scheme provides that repair and improvement works, to bring such properties up to the standard for rented accommodation, are funded by the Local Authority. The cost of the works is then deducted from rent/lease payments over an agreed lease term of at least five years.
Requirements of Repair & Leasing Scheme
There are a number of requirements in relation to the scheme:
- The house must be vacant for at least one year.
- There must be a social housing demand for the property.
- The property must be assessed as being viable to provide accommodation.
- The maximum funding available is €40,000, inclusive of VAT.
- Where the property is a former bedsit being brought into line with the Standards for Rented Houses, funding of up to €50,000, inclusive of VAT, is available.
- Where a property requires repairs to bring it up to the standard required for rented properties, the RLS will pay for the repairs in return for the property being made available to be used as social housing for a period of at least 5 years under either a direct lease or Rental Availability Arrangement with the local authority.
- The scope and cost of the works are agreed between the owner and the Local Authority.
- The initiative is not available for private renting.
For more information, please see Repair and Leasing Scheme FAQs
Why lease your property to Mayo County Council?
Upgrade your property at no capital outlay from your own resources.
- You will have a guaranteed rent.
- You will have no loss of rent during vacant periods.
- You will have no collection of rent from tenants.
- You will not have to find new tenants.
- You will have no responsibility for repair or maintenance during the leased period.
- You will have no advertising costs.
For further information and details please contact; Gerri Joyce (094 90 64746) or Eileen Kelly (094 90 64743)
Repair and Leasing Scheme Application Form