A tenancy agreement is a contract between a landlord and a tenant that gives permission for a tenant to live in a property for a certain period of time as long as they abide by certain rules. As a landlord you need to make sure you have the right agreement for your property to be properly legally protected – one that is appropriate for the type of let, covers any special requirements for your property and has been drafted recently, so it complies with recent law changes.
The most common type of tenancies are :
Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement (AST)
This is the most common type of agreement. It can be used for houses and flats that are rented as a whole to a group (students, couples, young professionals). At the end of the fixed term the tenancy automatically runs on unless you take steps to end it, and a deposit will need to be held in a tenancy deposit scheme.
Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement Room Only
This is for use where a non-resident landlord rents out an individual room – this might happen in a shared house or a bedsit. Again, a deposit will need to be held in a tenancy deposit scheme.
Excluded Tenancy Agreement (Lodgers Agreement)
If you are a resident landlord and you share living accommodation with your tenant, this is the tenancy for you. It is different from an AST in that, as long as you give the proper notice, you can evict the tenant without a court order. Also, the usual month-long notice period is not required, and if you take a deposit it does not have to be placed in a tenancy deposit scheme.
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). If you take a deposit it does not need to be protected under one of the Government approved tenancy schemes and you do not need to serve a Section 21 Notice or a Section 8 Notice to obtain possession. It is a fixed term tenancy which then runs on automatically as a monthly tenancy. You will need to give a notice to quit to end the tenancy.