You have been illegally subjected to a rent increase: understanding how to address it

26 Feb 2024

Rental prices in Dubai are skyrocketing. In 2023, average rental rates in some areas of the city increased by as much as 20%. However, in some cases, the market itself sets the maximum values, while in others, you may encounter an unlawful increase in rent from the landlord. Fortunately, Dubai has the RERA committee, which regulates all conflicts in rental pricing.

Basic knowledge

Owners can only increase rent once a year. They must notify the tenant at least 90 days in advance. Rent increases must correspond to the market level and RERA regulations. The rent price can increase by:

• 5% – if the rent is below market by 11-20%;

• 10% – if the rent is below market by 21-30%;

• 15% – if the rent is below market by 31-40%;

• 20% – if the rent is below market by 40% or more;

Legal limit of increase

RERA regularly analyzes all offers and establishes the average rental cost in the market – this serves as the starting point for all owners regarding rent increases. You can also use the RERA calculator, which will request information about the area and all apartments available for rent, compare prices, and display the legal threshold for increasing your rent.

What to do if the law Is violated?

You have 3 options. You can contact the Rental Dispute Settlement Center in the Land Department and report the problem. Or resolve the dispute amicably by presenting arguments that it is illegal. If nothing works, then file an official complaint at the RERA center in Deira.