The measures implemented by Royal Decree-Act 20/2022, of 27th of December, in the leases sector

On 1st of January, the Royal Decree-Act 20/2022, of 27th of December entered into force with measures in response to the economic and social consequences of the Ukraine war and to support the reconstruction of the island of La Palma and other vulnerability situations; which among others, adopted a series of measures in relation to housing leases.

  1. Extension of the limitation to update rent.

Since the Spanish Consumer Price Index (IPC) continues to have a high percentage and this figure is used as the benchmark index to update, among others, rent agreements; the limitation on the annual update of rent in the housing lease contracts has been extended up to 31st of December 2023, subject to the Urban Leases Act whose rent must be updated because this complies with the respective annual term of the contract in force. Hence, this update cannot exceed the annual variation of the General Competitiveness Index, which at the date of this update, currently has a maximum value of 2%.

Bear in mind that this limitation does not affect the rent updates in the leasing of real estate properties for uses other than housing, where the principle of freedom of agreement between the parties prevails.

  1. Extension of the suspension of eviction proceedings and evictions for vulnerable households without housing alternatives.

Since the entry into force of the Royal Decree-Act until the date of 30th of June 2023, when a landlord seeks the eviction of a tenant due to payment default or expiration of the contractual period, always when the tenant is renting a house subject to the Urban Leases Act, the latter may request an extraordinary suspension of the eviction on the grounds that said party is in a situation of economic vulnerability that makes it impossible for this party to find alternative housing for himself/herself and for the persons with whom said party lives.

This suspension shall also apply in the cases in which the recovery of a squatted house is sought, always when said house belongs to a legal entity or an individual who is the owner of more than ten houses and that the person who is squatting in the house is a dependent person in accordance with Act 39/2006, of 14th of December, a victim of violence on women or has a dependent or a minor person in said party’s care, coexisting in the same house.

The requirements that the tenant or squatter must comply with in order to assess the alleged vulnerability are stipulated in Royal Decree-Act 11/2020, of 31st of March, as well as the documentation that must be submitted to prove such vulnerability.

  1. Extraordinary extension of the habitual house lease contracts.

In the habitual house lease contracts subject to the Urban Leases Act, in which, within the period comprised from the entry into force of the Royal Decree-Law until 30th of June 2023, the mandatory or tacit extension period concludes; at the tenant’s request, an extraordinary extension for the rental contract period of six months from the termination date must be applied, during which the terms and conditions established for the contract in force shall continue to apply.

As it can be seen, these are all measures aimed at protecting the tenant and are in line with those that have been adopted since the outset of the pandemic caused by Covid-19.