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COVID-19 clause in rental contract

Posted by Michel B. on 04/11/2020

We know that renting a home is the option that many choose for various reasons.
We are also aware of the complexities that can be involved both in finding the right property and in the series of legal procedures that you have to go through.

Rental contract

When we draw up a rental contract, it is done in order to protect the interests of both the landlord and the tenant, always in accordance with current legislation, which must be reflected in the contract.

On many occasions, tax advice is requested, since said document must be as complete as possible, with all the specified conditions: justification of the rent by the tenant, state of the property, price, duration …

Until this year, no clause was contemplated that included what to do in the event of a pandemic, but COVID-19 has suddenly burst in so that we rethink how to proceed if the state of alarm or a new confinement is decreed again. Last March, both owners and tenants found themselves in an unprecedented situation: many students had to suddenly return to their usual places of residence, leaving the owners without income and with the appliances in their homes, and the locals had to lower your blind.

Once the summer is over and in the face of fear of a devastating second wave, many have decided to include in their contracts a clause that specifies, with the agreement of the parties, what to do in case of confinement: this is what has been known as the «COVID clause. -19 ».

What is the COVID-19 Clause?

The COVID-19 clause arises from the need to protect both the tenant and the owner from a new wave of coronavirus. Despite the fact that many agreed to it by word of mouth in March, now they choose to leave it in writing in the contract.

The contract must indicate all the necessary conditions to know how to act and clarify in certain circumstances, especially in these times of pandemic:

-Price discounts.
-Abandonment of the property.
-Indemnify the lessor to avoid delinquency.

Who is it intended for?

The COVID clause is designed for very specific profiles:

-University students who have to travel to another province to study.
-Commercial premises that see their activity ceased before the mandatory closure.
-People in temporary rent who move for work reasons
-Vacation rental.

-Foreigners who are forced to return to their country.

And the long-term rental?

This clause is not entirely recommended for people on a long-term rental scheme for various reasons:

1.According to article 11 of the Leasing Law, the contract can be withdrawn before its expiration once a minimum of 6 months have elapsed since the signing.

  1. In general, it is not a group, such as students, that has the option of returning to another home.
  2. In the event that the tenant has been fired or is in an ERTE or an ERE, the Government launched a series of measures in March to facilitate the payment of rent. In this way, you will have financial solvency to be able to pay the rent without having to leave the house.

4.However, in many cases this clause is also being included in order to reach an agreement between the parties without the need to resort to eviction for non-payment.

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