Ending a Tenancy (England) | England | Tenant Wants to Leave (England)

Inventory status if one tenant leaves

16 Feb 2022 | 5 comments

I understand that if a joint tenant gives notice then it ends the tenancy for all but if we agreed to keep one tenant on and re protect the deposit and issue a new agreement in one name what happens with legalities of the inventory. We use a full date stamped photographic inventory and although we can re draft it, how would this look to a deposit company and court if there were deductions. We wouldn’t want to create a new inventory as the property condition has deteriorated and the property is full of their belongings.



  1. guildy

    Firstly, you’re right to be doing a new tenancy with the one remaining and effectively start it all again.

    The old tenant will not be liable for anything beyond the point they vacated and the new tenancy created. Perhaps the ideal would be to make any deductions now as things are, and that way, both are jointly liable. Then, you could create a new inventory for the new tenancy, having sorted everything to that point.

    Otherwise, leaving the inventory as initially created, the one remaining tenant is liable from the previous tenancy and then through into the new single tenancy and, as such, can be held responsible for the whole time.

    Where a tenancy is joint and several, the choice is yours as to whether you go after just one (severally) or multiple (jointly).

  2. Property2008

    If the one remaining tenant wants to move someone in but we want to preserve the initial inventory is the best option to permit the other occupier on a lodger agreement so the remaining sole tenant remains liable the whole time?

  3. guildy

    We wouldn’t advise a lodger agreement.

    If the primary tenant leaves and the lodger remains, it could be tricky getting them out because it wouldn’t be known what the best notice to serve is and what court procedure to use. At least if they are a named tenant, it’s easy, and we know what notices to serve and the possession process to use.

  4. Property2008

    Its tricky then as we can’t let anyone move in because the original photographic inventory is date stamped so we can’t change it and we need to preserve it so the original tenant remains liable the whole time. If a lodger agreement isn’t advisable are we just best to decline any tenant that asks for someone to move in?

  5. guildy

    Not sure we would be stopping a deal over this. Could you perhaps take photos on the date of the new tenancy? We know it wouldn’t be a complete inventory and not perfect, but it might be sufficient in the event of a dispute.

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