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Landlord has right to demolish building over 25 years

I live in Salmiya in an old building which consists of 3 floors but the condition of the building is very good. Our last contract was renewed in 2013 in which they increased our flat rent.

All our contracts for this flat are renewed every year and we also have our last year’s contract with us. I have been staying in this building with my family since August 1992, which is over 20 years (the building is more than 25 years old).

Yesterday, the landlord sent a representative to our building and he gave all the tenants of the building his terms for the evacuation of the building without any notice from the court.

Furthermore, he stated that the tenants could either take rent in advance for 5 months from Oct 31, 2016 and vacate the flat from Oct 31, 2016 or stay for 3 months from Oct 31, 2016 to Jan 30, 2017 without rent. He gave us 1 day to think about the terms which he had stated above as he wanted us to sign a paper.

Furthermore, he was saying that they want to demolish the building. When he came today he repeated the same. All the tenants told him if he wants us to vacate the building he has to show us the notice of demolition from the Municipality which he did not have.

All the tenants of the building said that the landlord should let them stay for 6 months without rent but the representative rejected the request and said he would file the case against the tenants and left the building.

Kindly advice us what we should do and what does the law state on the above situation as he said he won’t be showing or bringing the notice from any where. Does he have the right to kick us all out of the building without notice. And next time if he come with the notice only from his company to vacate the flats and not the papers from the Municipality … what should we do.

Name withheld
Answer: The landlord has the right to demolish the building once it is over 25 years old and he doesn’t need to show you the Municipality notice.

On the other hand if he files a case against you, the law will be on his side because of the 25-year clause. So, if that happens, not only will you have to leave the building at some stage — in fact you might get only a 3-month notice, you will also have to pay the rent for all the three months that you stay there.

The landlord can also take his offer off the table and there is nothing you can do about it. So, the best thing would be to take the offer he has given you before you end up losing everything.

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