Information for tenants
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There are different types of tenancy agreement. The type of tenancy you have will depend on when it was taken out. Some types of tenancy provide the tenant with more rights than others, and most people have one of three types:
Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST)
An AST is one of the most common type of tenancy from a private landlord. If your tenancy started, or was agreed, on or after 28 February 1997, it is likely to be an Assured Shorthold Tenancy. Tenancies starting, or agreed, before that date but after 15 January 1989, are more likely to be Assured Tenancies. These tenancies are usually for an agreed term, frequently this is for a period of 6 or 12 months. It may be possible to renew your AST at the end of the term, sometimes, you will need to find alternative accommodation at the end of the tenancy term. Your landlord is required to give you adequate notice to end the tenancy, this is usually two months if it is not at the end of the lease term. It is more than likely that you will need to pay a deposit when you sign the lease for an AST. See information about tenancy deposits.
An Assured tenancy
Regulated (or 'protected' tenancy)
If you moved into the property before 15th January 1989, you may have a Regulated or Protected Tenancy. This type of tenancy offers the most protection against rent increases or eviction.
N.B. From 1 October 2010 an Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST) is a tenancy that has an annual rent below £100,000. A Common Law Tenancy will be used for any tenancies that have a rent above £100,000 a year.
It is important to know that if you are not an Assured or an Assured Shorthold Tenant as your rights may be different. For example:
- if you live with your landlord as a lodger and share living accommodation, this maybe known as a Non-Excluded Tenancy or Licence
- if your landlord has divided a property into flats and the tenant occupies a different flat from the landlord, this maybe known as an Excluded Tenancy or Licence
- if you rent a property where the combined rent is over £100,000 per year, this is known a as a Bare Contractual Tenancy or Common Law Tenancy
Bare Contractual Tenancies tend to occur in large households where many people occupy a property or large properties rented in influential areas.
Raylets will normally issue Assured Shorthold Tenancy agreements.