The Minister for Works and Housing, Samuel Atta Akyea says due to the shortcomings of the existing Rent Act, 1963 (ACT 220), which does not significantly address current challenges of rental housing in Ghana, a new Rent Bill (Rent Bill, 2020) has been prepared and presented to cabinet for approval.
Addressing the media in Accra this morning, the Minister said the review of the existing rent act is intended to safeguard the rights of vulnerable tenants who have constantly been outpriced by the uncontrollable hikes in the cost of renting accommodation in the country.
“The Bill seeks to ensure that, property developers are not discouraged from investing in the housing industry by rigid rent control mechanisms that suppress chargeable rent to artificial levels. Currently, the Bill is before Cabinet for approval,” the minister said.
The minister, therefore, called on landlords and tenants to be law-abiding more than ever considering the strain COVID-19 pandemic has had on the rental housing market in the country.
“Although the review of the existing Law is on-going, let me reiterate that the law governing the landlord-tenant relationship has not been suspended”.
The bill, when approved will mitigate the seemingly unfair practices of some landlords such as wrongful termination of contracts, eviction, and other outrageous demands for rent advance. This will bring some sanity to the rental system. Atta Akyea further announced that the Real Estate Bill, 2020, which seeks to establish the Real Estate Agency has been finalized and submitted to Parliament. He said the bill, when passed, will regulate real estate agency practices, real estate commercial transactions including the sale, purchase, rental, and leasing of real estate and related fixed assets.
Other bills that are at various stages of implementation according to the minister are Condominium Bill, Architects Bill, and the Ghana Hydrological Authority Bill.