Khaleej Times, Tuesday, Jan 10, 2023 | Jamadi Al Thani 17, 1444
Dubai rent hike: Can I challenge increase if new rate falls within Rera calculator range?
Question: I received a rent hike notice for my Dubai apartment after just one
year of living there. The hike was substantial but falls within the limits of
the Real Estate Regulatory Agency (Rera) calculator. Is this legal? Can
landlords hike rents substantially in just one year? Can I go to the disputes
centre even if the rent is within the Rera calculator?
Answer: It is assumed that the term of your tenancy contract with the landlord
is for one year and it is due for renewal soon. Since you are residing in a
rented apartment in Dubai, the provisions of Law No. 26 of 2007 Regulating the
Relationship between Landlords and Tenants in the Emirate of Dubai and the
provisions of Law No.33 of 2008 Amending Law No. 26 of 2007 Regulating the
Relationship between Landlords and Tenants in the Emirate of Dubai are
In Dubai, a landlord is entitled to increase the rent in accordance with the
rent calculator designed by Rera. This is in accordance with Article 10 of the
Dubai Rent Law, which states: “Rera will have the authority to establish
criteria relating to percentages of rent increase in the emirate in line with
the requirements of the prevailing economic situation.”
Moreover, the rent increase in Dubai is subject to various criteria — such as
the rent of similar apartments in the locality, the economic conditions in the
emirate, the condition of the rented apartment, etc. This is in accordance with
Article 9(2) of the Amended Dubai Rent Law.
Based on the above provisions of the law, your landlord may increase the rent of
your rented apartment while renewing the tenancy contract based on the Rera
calculator. Moreover, the rent increase of an apartment may not be on an annual
basis but may be increased on renewal of tenancy contract only if the Rera rent
calculator and other criteria of the rented apartment allow such rent increase.
If you feel the rent increase is substantial based on other criteria of the
rental apartment, then you may approach the Dubai Rental Dispute Centre to
decide the rent you need to pay to your landlord on renewal of the tenancy
This is in accordance with Article 13 of the Amended Dubai Rent law, which
states: “For the purposes of renewing the tenancy contract, the landlord and
tenant may, prior to the expiry of the tenancy contract, amend any of the terms
or review the rent, whether increasing or decreasing it. Should the landlord and
tenant fail to reach an agreement, then the tribunal may determine the fair
rent, taking into account the criteria stipulated in Article 9 of this law.”
However, your landlord may not have the right to increase the rent prior to the
renewal of the tenancy contract even if the rent increase is reflected in the
Rera rent calculator.