Rent issues can be of major concern for my clients
If you have a case against you at court, or if you end up paying your rent at court, then expect a case to be filed against you, and this means that you will need to either be prepared to write your defense in Arabic or to hire a lawyer.
Possibility of increasing your rent .
Generally landlord cannot increase rent. Rent for private or residency (non-commercial) properties can only be increased once every five years , Landlord can only increase rent in the following situations:
1) If the tenant agrees to the proposed increase
2) Its been 5 years and the contract has ended (rule is once every 5 years)
3) The rent is 50% less than the market price
By law, if your rent contract ends and you continue living there then it renews by default for the same time of rent pay
Reasons a landlord can terminate the lease for the residential rental.
1) If tenant hasn’t paid rent
2) If the tenant rents out the residency to a third person without permission
3) If the residence is being used for illegal activities
4) If the building is no longer structurally safe( Possibility of compensation for leaving the place )
5) If the landlord wants to rebuild the building or reconstruct it.
Lawyer Fajer from Arab times wrote some QA ,
Question: I have been living in an apartment for 18 months, but only had a one year contract. Does that mean that my contract automatically renewed itself for a year? And if so does that mean I cannot leave till the remaining six months are over?
Fajer: If the term of your rent’s contract ends, yet you continue to occupy the space and pay the rent in a timely manner, then your contract is renewed for the period of your rent payment. For example, if you pay monthly, then your contract is renewed month by month even though you initially had a one year contract. To put it in simple terms, anything beyond the initial term of your contract is renewed according to what you are paying for.
Question: My question to you pertains to the raising of rents by landlords. What is the criteria that landlords use to raise the rents? Is there any law stipulating the maximum percentage that a landlord can raise the rent to, or does the law leave it to his discretion?
Fajer: Well, if the landlord is raising the rent (after five years of you occupying the space, as mentioned above), then he can only raise it if it is 50 percent less than the market price and can only raise it up to the average market price. How do you calculate the average market price? You see how much a place with the same standards as your building in the same location is going for. That might not be so easy to determine as places differ all the time.
Paying at court
Question: I keep reading from you and hearing from friends as well that if I am having disputes with my landlord I can pay rent at court. Is this true? And how or where do I go?
Fajer: Yes, it is true that you can pay your rent at court. There are different court buildings in Kuwait, with the major court ‘the Palace of Justice’ being located in Kuwait City. You should check the nearest court to your residential area; there is one main court building in every Kuwaiti governorate. Once you find the building, you will need to speak some Arabic and ask for directions to the rental court. Take with you your rental agreement and civil ID and deposit the money at court; you will get a receipt instantly.