The Public Relations Officer of the Rent Control Department, Emmanuel Hovey Kporsu has stated that it is unlawful for landlords to adjust upwards the rent rate without the any approval from the Rent Control office.
According to him, all new rent rates must be approved by the Rent Control Department before it can be effected to ensure that they are reasonable and befit the condition of the premises that is being rented.
“Under section 19, (1) it says no landlord of premises shall collect from the tenant of such premises any increase of rate attributable to any increase of rate in respect of such premises unless he has notified the tenant previously in writing in a prescribed form, the amount of the old rate, the amount of the new rate and where part of any premises has been let, the amount of rate attributed to such part, the amount of the increase in rent and that from which the new rate takes effect.”
“So when you come to section 19 (3) that’s where it insists that no landlord should collect any increase in rate until that premise has been assessed,” he stressed.
Mr. Kporsu in an interview said, when the Rent Control Office finish assessing and give the landlords the rate, that’s where you have to notify the tenant that from this month going, or from the next two months going, I’ll be charging you this new rate from this old one which I’m currently collecting. And this new rate has been approved by the rent control department or the magistrate.”
He further stated that, landlords cannot implement new rent rates till the tenancy agreement with the tenant has been fully exhausted.
He mentioned that in the circumstance where the new rent rate has been approved by the Rent Control office, the landlord is obliged to notify the tenant in writing of the new development.