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Landlords who charge beyond 6 months rent advance liable to 2-year jail term

According to Ghana’s Rent Control Laws, Landlords who charge more than six months rent advance from tenants are liable to a two-year jail term.

The Public Relations Officer of the Rent Control Department, Emmanuel Hovey Kporsu on Joy FM’s Newsfile disclosed that property owners must not exploit tenants to recoup their investments.

“Any person who as a condition of the grant, renewal or continuance of a tenancy demands in the case of monthly or shorter tenancy, the payment in advance of more than a month’s rent or in the case of tenancy exceeding six months, the payment in advance of more than six months’ rent shall be guilty of an offense and shall upon conviction by the appropriate rent magistrate be liable to a fine not exceeding 500 penalty unit or in default imprisonment term not exceeding 2 years or both.” Mr. Kporsu said.

Mr Kporsu also cautioned property owners to lease their assets in accordance to the law. “The law says don’t demand and don’t receive, so if you don’t demand it.” he added.

Mr Kporsu addressed that the tenancy agreement must take into account the fundamental human rights of tenants.

He stated that before a landlord puts together a tenancy agreement, sections in the rent act must be considered to prevent one from coming out with a fictitious tenancy agreement that infringes on the rights of tenants.

“In writing the tenancy agreement you should take into consideration the universal consideration of human rights. You have to take into consideration Article 12(2) of constitution which spells out the fundamental human right,” he concluded on Saturday.

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