What is a Tenancy Agreement and why do you need one?
MARK QUINN >
SolicitorTue 19 February 2019
A Tenancy Agreement
A tenancy agreement is, in effect, a contract between a landlord and tenant. It’s crucial to any tenancy arrangement because it sets out the rental sum and when/how the payments should be made and indeed reviewed. It will also stipulate the sum of the deposit and set out terms as to when the deposit can be fully or partly withheld (e.g. damage to the property).
From the tenant’s point of view, it will include details as to whether the tenancy can be terminated early and will stipulate who is responsible for minor repairs. Further, the agreement will set out whether the property can be sublet and/or whether pets are permitted.
In short, a tenancy agreement provides clarity and reassurance to both the landlord and tenant.
Assured Shorthold Tenancy
The most common form of agreement is an Assured Shorthold Tenancy (“AST”). This type of agreement will apply where:
- the landlord is a private individual or a housing association (not a local council)
- the tenancy started on or after 15 January 1989
- the property is the tenants’ main accommodation (not a holiday let or business tenancy)
- the landlord does not live in the property
The gov.uk website provides a useful resource for landlords to ensure their tenancy agreement is legally compliant. It should be noted that two signed copies are required and any changes after the event will require the consent of all parties.
Mark Quinn is a consultant solicitor at Taylor Rose. Should you require further advice on any issues within this article, please do not hesitate to contact him on 01733 865 136.
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