The contractual relationship between the tenant and the landlord is primarily based on trust. The possibility of evicting a tenant who has own house depends on whether this fact has been concealed from the landlord. This is because the tenant's unfair behavior in this regard would damage the trust relationship between the landlord and tenant and lead to the tenant's unjust enrichment. The situation of unjust enrichment arises when the tenant rents out their own house at a higher price while living in a more affordable rented property, and this is concealed from the landlord. In this article, we will examine the legal basis and conditions for the eviction of a tenant who possesses their own house and provide answers to frequently asked questions.
Legal Basis for Eviction When the Tenant Has Her Own House
The provision regulating the eviction of a tenant who possesses their own house is stipulated in Article 352, Paragraph 3 of the Turkish Code of Obligations. The relevant article states, "If the landlord, at the time of concluding the lease agreement, is unaware that the tenant or the spouse living together with the tenant has a suitable house within the boundaries of the same district or municipality, the landlord may terminate the lease agreement through a lawsuit starting from the end of the contract."
Conditions for Evicting a Tenant Who Has Own House
Tenants can only be evicted in the presence of reasons specified by law. These reasons include the tenant or the spouse having a house within the same district or municipality boundaries, the house being suitable for habitation, the landlord being unaware of the tenant's ownership of their own house at the time of signing the lease agreement, and the lawsuit being filed within one month after the end of the lease period.
The Tenant or the Spouse Having a House in the Same Municipality Boundaries
The first condition for the eviction of a tenant who has their own house is that the house must belong to the tenant or the spouse, and it must be located within the boundaries of the same municipality. In this context, the concept of being within the same municipality refers to the district or municipal boundaries. Therefore, for properties located within the boundaries of metropolitan municipalities, this regulation may not be applicable. Therefore, the boundaries should be clearly determined, and a legal strategy should be created accordingly.
Furthermore, the house must belong to the tenant or the spouse living together. Therefore, if there is any separation decision between the tenant and their spouse, this provision cannot be applied. Therefore, during the lawsuit, the tenant and their spouse must be living together.
Suitability of the House for Habitation
The presence of a house belonging to the tenant or their spouse within the same municipal boundaries is not sufficient for eviction. This house must also be suitable for the tenant's and their family's lifestyles and must be of a quality that allows them to live in it. For example, if the tenant has a family of 6 people and owns a one-bedroom apartment within the same municipal boundaries, it is not considered sufficient for eviction.
According to the last paragraph of Article 352 of the Turkish Code of Obligations, it is necessary that the tenant or the spouse living together, the tenant has a suitable house within the boundaries of the same district or municipality where the lawsuit is filed, and the social status of the defendant, as well as the number of family members, is suitable for residing. These conditions must be met together.Court of Cassation Decision on Evicting a Tenant Who Has Their Own House - 3rd Civil Chamber, E. 2017/4366 K. 2017/12337 Dated 20.9.2017
Landlord Must be Unaware of the Tenant's Ownership at the Time of Signing the Contract
Another condition for the eviction of a tenant who has their own house is that the landlord must not have been aware of the tenant's ownership of a house at the time of signing the contract. This provision is based on the trust that the tenant and the landlord have towards each other during the pre-contract phase. Indeed, the principle of honesty is one of the fundamental principles of law, and parties should behave honestly towards each other and avoid actions that harm each other. The situation where the landlord is unaware of the tenant owning their own house can occur in the form of the tenant concealing this fact or the tenant or their spouse acquiring a residence later on. Therefore, if the tenant has their own house within the same municipal boundaries after signing the lease agreement, it can be formed as a reason for eviction.
Although the court ruled that the conditions for Article 352 of the Turkish Code of Obligations did not exist due to the absence of any residence owned by the defendant during the establishment of the lease agreement, if the tenant or the spouse living together with the tenant acquire a suitable house within the boundaries of the same district or municipality, and if the tenant's social status and family population is suitable for residence, the landlord may request eviction.Ankara Regional Court Decision on Evicting a Tenant Who Has Their Own House - 15th Civil Chamber, E. 2018/2627 K. 2019/1503 Dated 11.7.2019
Filing a Lawsuit Within 1 Month from the End of the Contract
Another condition for the eviction of a tenant who has own house is that a lawsuit must be filed within 1 month after the end of the lease period. Just like in eviction cases based on two valid notices, eviction due to necessity, and eviction due to renovation, a lawsuit must be filed within 1 month after the end of the lease period in cases based on this reason. This period is strict, and failure to file a lawsuit within the specified time will result in the loss of the right to file a lawsuit. Therefore, utmost care should be taken, and legal assistance from a lawyer should be sought.
Frequently Asked Questions
If the tenant has her own house, she can be evicted. For this, it is necessary that the landlord is unaware that the tenant or her spouse has own residence at the time of signing the lease agreement. Additionally, the mentioned residence must be suitable for the tenant and their family to live in, and it must be located within the same municipal boundaries as the rented property. The purpose of this regulation is to ensure that everyone adheres to principles of honesty. After all, the landlord-tenant relationship is built on trust, and the erosion of trust makes the contract intolerable for both parties. To prevent this, the legislator has provided the landlord with the opportunity to terminate the contract in such cases. For a tenant to be evicted, all the necessary conditions must be met. Each specific case should be evaluated within its own context, and seeking legal assistance from eviction lawyers in Turkey is strongly recommended. Otherwise, significant time and financial losses may occur.
Inflation and the 25% rent increase limit adversely affect rental prices. As a result, parties are suffering negativities. If the necessary conditions are not met for an eviction lawsuit based on the tenant's having own house, other eviction reasonscan be explored, or if the conditions are met, a rent determination lawsuit or a rent adjustment lawsuit can be filed.