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Tenancy Agreements

POSTED: 8th December 2014
IN: Landlord helpful guides
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There are different types of tenancy agreements to meet most circumstances of letting. So it's important to know which agreements suits your individual circumstance.

Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement (AST)

This is the most commonly used form. It can be used for houses and flats (self contained units) and it can be used where a house or flat is rented as a whole to a group such as groups of students, young professionals etc.

On the other hand, if you are renting out individual rooms then normally a Room Only Tenancy Agreement is the appropriate form.

Room Only Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement

This is for use where a non-resident landlord rents out an individual room to a tenant (e.g. in a shared house or a bedsit). The accommodation would not be self-contained so the tenant will share facilities (e.g. a bathroom or kitchen) with other tenants in the same house/building.

Where an Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement should not be used

Where an Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement should not be used

If any of the following apply to you as landlord then the two types of assured shorthold tenancy referred to above may not be suitable for your requirements and you should consider an alternative form of agreement as listed below.

This applies where -

  1. You are renting out your own home which you have occupied in the past as your only or main home (or if there is more than one landlord at least one of the landlords has occupied the property as his/her only or main home).
  2. You are resident in the same house/building and you share living accommodation (e.g. bathroom, toilet, kitchen or a living room) with the tenant.
  3. You reside in the same house/building but you do not share any living accommodation with the tenant (i.e. you do not share bathroom, toilet, kitchen or living room) and your own residence in the house/building is your only or main home.
  4. The rent is less than £250 per year.
  5. You are certain that this will be a second home for the tenant i.e. the tenant's only or main home is somewhere else and will remain elsewhere during the currency of the tenancy.
  6. The tenant to whom you let the property is a limited company, limited liability partnership (LLP) or other incorporated body i.e. the tenant or if there is more than one tenant all of the tenants are not individuals.

If any of these situations apply, you should consider one of the following:

Excluded Tenancy Agreement (Lodgers Agreement)

This is for use if you are a resident landlord and you share living accommodation with your tenant.

This does not create an Assured Shorthold Tenancy or a Non-Shorthold Assured Tenancy.

Company Let Agreement

This form is for use where the tenant is an incorporated body (e.g. a limited company, limited liability partnership (LLP) etc). Where there is more than one tenant none of them must be individuals. They must all be incorporated bodies. The tenancy is not an assured tenancy.

Owner Occupier Tenancy Agreement

This is for use where you let your own home. You should only use it if you have actually lived yourself in the property and when you lived there it was your only or main home. It does not matter how long ago; nor does it matter that you did not actually own the property when you lived there.

Non Assured Tenancy Agreement

This is for use in three situations:-

  1. Where the rent is not more than £250 per annum.
  2. The tenant has his/her only or main home elsewhere. If there are joint tenants each of them must have their only or main home elsewhere. You need to be sure of this situation and as certain as you can be that it will continue for the duration of the tenancy. For example if a tenant lives with his family elsewhere at weekends and uses the property during the week returning home at weekends.
  3. You are resident as landlord but do not share living accommodation with the tenant. This means that you must not share toilet, bathroom, kitchen or a living room with the tenant. However, your residence elsewhere in the same property must be your only or main home and not your second home.

In all of these cases as the tenancy is not an assured tenancy.

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These guides are provided in association with RLA - The Residential Landlords Association.

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