The Secretary-General of the National Tenants Union, Frederick Opoku, says landlords must make it mandatory to ascertain the background of their tenants.
Speaking to host of Prime Morning, Roselyn Felli on Thursday, Mr. Opoku said that this will help them know the behavioural traits of the individuals they accommodate.
“Certainly, I think that who should be responsible as to probing and knowing the kind of person admitted to your place, I think it should be the duty of the landlord, because definitely, you are going to accept the person, you need to do some basic checks. It is very important,” he said.
According to the Secretary-General, the Rent Control Department is required to keep a database of all tenants.
This is to assist all individuals in their search for rental property as well as to track down individuals wanted by security agencies.
Mr. Frederick Opoku indicated that landlords must put a premium on knowing their tenants and not only be interested in taking rent from them.
“The responsibility of harboring criminals in commercial apartments lies on the landlord,” the Secretary-General commented.
Also on the show, the Head of Public Relations at the Rent Control Department, Emmanuel Xove Kporsu, hammered on the earlier- established fact of landlords probe before recruiting residents.
He said, “You know, anybody you harbor in your premises, at least you must know a little information about that person and the bill that we are reviewing is going to make it an offense for any landlord who does not do any proper check before renting the premises out.”
In addition, Mr. Kporsu claimed that due to the issue of terrorism in the country, it is indeed necessary that a landlord make such checks on the tenant he wishes to admit, in order not to allow just anybody who could be a potential terrorist into the neighborhood.
According to him, after the tenancy agreement has been signed by the landlord and the tenant, it ought to be lodged at the Rent Control Department for further investigation.
He said that failure to do all these checks is an offense on the part of the landlord, and he could be sanctioned for it.
The Head of Public Relations added that tenants themselves must be vigilant and should know their rights as far as rent is concerned.
He cited an example of some landlords charging rent in foreign currencies while they are not licensed to, so the tenant in such a case, according to Kporsu, must report to the police and the rent control department will intervene.
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