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Question

Tenancy Agreements (England)

AST shorter than 6 months

26 Jul 2017 | 1 comment

Hello,
This is a follow up question to one I asked earlier in the week.
To recap I have 3 tenants on a single AST who have been renting from me for 23 months. I am very happy with them for a number of reasons i.e. they pay the rent on time and look after the property. One of them asked if his partner of 4 years could move in. You advised it would be best to enter into a new AST agreement rather than just say yes. The original fixed term was 2 years (which expires next month) with a 1 year break clause. I initially advised them the new agreement would bind them in for another 6 months purely because I thought that was the minimum term for an AST. On doing some research it seems an AST can be for any length of time but the landlord cannot ask the tenants to leave for the first 6 months. Bearing in mind they have already been tenants for 23 months and I’m very happy with them continuing I don’t think I’d have a reason for wanting them to leave. If I gave all 4 of them a new AST for a term of 1 month would that then turn into a periodic tenancy at the end of the month effectively putting them in the same position as if no new agreement had been entered into and their original agreement had become periodic? Is there anything I don’t know and should be aware of? Thanks. Paul

Answer

1 Comment

  1. guildy

    Although legally you could do a one month tenancy, there really isn’t any point in our view.

    You may as well do a six month term because there’s no benefit to you in not doing. This also gives the tenants a feeling of a little security.

    Since October 2015, you can’t serve a section 21 (2 months notice for no reason) within the first four months of a tenancy. This rule doesn’t apply to a renewal but because of the change in names, this isn’t a renewal and is a brand new tenancy. As the 21 can’t be served until after 4 months and as the notice needs to be at least 2 months (plus service), the tenant is effectively guaranteed 6 months before they can even be asked to leave (without reason).

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