HAP Scheme – Landlord Terms and Conditions
The Housing Assistance Payment (HAP) will only be paid to a landlord under these terms and conditions.
Ownership of the property the subject of the HAP payment
The landlord must provide proof of ownership of the property in one of the documents listed in the application checklist on the HAP Application Form. Detailed information on the types of documents accepted can be found in the ‘FAQ for Landlords’. You can get this from your local authority.
Whichever form of proof you provide, it must include the landlord’s name and the full address of the rented property, including the block number and apartment number, and be in date. You must provide proof of ownership whether the HAP payment is to be made directly to a landlord or to a nominated managing agent.
The applicant HAP tenant must have a tenancy which is agreed in good faith for the property the HAP payments will be made for. Where there is a family relationship between the tenant and the landlord, the local authority may seek evidence of a previous landlord and tenant relationship between the landlord and the HAP applicant. This evidence may include:
- proof of rent payments
- a lease or tenancy agreement for the property
- registration of the tenancy with the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB)
It is for the applicant and landlord to prove that what is being proposed is a bona fide tenancy. HAP cannot be paid where the tenant is seeking to rent within the family home.
Rental accommodation standards
There is a legal obligation that all rented properties, including those in HAP, must meet the Housing (Standards for Rented Houses) Regulations 2019, and all future regulations and standards. You can find out more about these standards on the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage’s website .
Under the HAP scheme, the local authority will arrange to inspect the property/dwelling within 8 months of the start of the HAP payments, if the property/dwelling was not already inspected within the previous 12 months, to make sure that it meets the required standards. If this inspection finds that it does not meet the standards, the local authority will write to the landlord giving a clearly stated time by which listed improvements or repairs must be completed. If the landlord fails to fix the problems by the date given, then all HAP payments will stop.
To be eligible to receive HAP payments, landlords must show that they have complied with all their tax obligations.
To do this, they must produce evidence of tax clearance issued by the Revenue Commissioners. Where payments are made to an authorised agent, the agent must prove they are tax compliant.
If you do not show evidence that you are tax compliant, your HAP payments will be suspended if the total amount paid to you by the local authority goes above €10,000 for any 12-month period.
Please note: Tax compliance is checked in ‘real-time’ through Revenue’s e-clearance system. Revenue can review or withdraw (rescind) your clearance certificate at any time. Your e-tax clearance application will automatically expire after 4 years and you must re-apply to Revenue.
HAP payments will be made monthly in arrears on the last Wednesday of every month by electronic funds transfer to the nominated bank account. All local authorities use the services of the HAP Shared Services Centre, which is based in Limerick, to make HAP rental payments to landlords.
The HAP Shared Services Centre also collects all rent contributions from HAP tenants. For this reason, HAP payments will be made to your account in the name of ‘HAP Shared Services Centre’ or ‘Limerick City and County Council’. Payments made to landlords who live outside the Republic of Ireland are subject to non-resident landlord withholding tax at the Standard Rate of 20%. For more information visit www.revenue.ie
Although a local authority may make payments to a landlord or their agent, this does not mean that the local authority is liable for rent due to the landlord. The payment arrangement does not establish any contract between the landlord and the local authority.
The local authority is not liable for paying the deposit a landlord may need before they are willing to rent a tenant a property.
Tenants’ rent contribution to their local authority
HAP tenants have to pay a weekly rental contribution to the local authority. They can only continue on the HAP scheme while they pay this agreed amount. Tenants who do not pay their rental contribution can be suspended from the HAP scheme and have their HAP payments to the landlord suspended or ceased.
Managing the tenancy
The landlord is solely responsible for managing a tenancy granted under the HAP scheme. As with any other tenancy, the conditions for this are set out in the Residential Tenancies Act 2004 (as amended). To continue to be eligible for a HAP tenancy, a tenant must not engage in anti-social behaviour. The local authority may suspend or stop HAP payments to the landlord if the tenant engages in anti-social behaviour.
Residential Tenancies Board
For all tenancies governed by the Residential Tenancies Act 2004 (as amended), disputes between tenants and landlords can be referred to the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB) for a decision. You can get more information about the RTB on www.rtb.ie
Rent pressure zones
Where a property is in a rent pressure zone, the landlord must show that they have complied with the law. The local authority may request proof of rent set under previous tenancies. Further information on rent pressure zones is available at www.rtb.ie