Secure and Non Secure TenanciesSecure Tenancies are most commonly provided by local authorities

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To qualify as a secure tenancy, the following conditions must apply more...

  1. The dwelling-house must be let for residential purposes, and let as a separate dwelling
  2. The landlord must be a Local Authority or other designated public body (as defined by HA 1985 s 80(1))
  3. The tenant must be an individual and occupy the dwelling as his or her only or principal home
  4. If there are joint tenants, each must be an individual, and at least one of them must occupy the dwelling house as his or her only or principal home

There are exceptions to this as follows:

  • Long tenancies (over 21 years and other limited types)
  • Introductory Tenancies
  • Premises occupied by way of employment
  • Tenancies granted pursuant to a Local Authority's duties to provide temporary accommodation for homeless and asylum purposes
  • Tenancies of Agricultural holdings and licensed premises Tenancies to which the LTA 1954 PtII Applies (business tenancies)
  • Student lettings

In most instances a secure tenancy is not capable of being assigned and any assignment will be ineffective and will grant no rights to an assignee.

However there are three exceptions to this rule:

  1. If it is an Assignment by way of exchange of properties (s.92) If you are a secure tenant you can exchange your tenancy with another secure or assured tenant however the Landlord's consent will be required and may not be given if the grounds set out are not followed.

    This right of assignment allows one secure tenant to exchange their tenancy with another secure or assured tenant. The Landlord's consent is required and may be withheld if the the tenant or assignee is subject to a possession order, if proceedings are pending under grounds 1-6 and a s83 notice has been served, or, if the accommodation is inappropriate for the tenant and/or assignee.

  2. If it is an Assignment under a property adjustment orders in connection with matrimonial proceedings
  3. If it is an Assignment to a person who would be qualified to succeed if the tenant had died immediately before the assignment
All secure tenancies include a term entitling the tenant to take in lodgers. However, the tenant may not sublet any part of the dwelling house without the landlord's consent and such consent cannot be unreasonably withheld by the landlord.

If the tenant, in breach of this term, sublets or parts with possession of the property without consent, the tenancy will lose its secured status and cannot subsequently become secure. This would give the landlord grounds for possession of the property.

Terminating a secured tenancy and obtaining possession of a secured tenancy more...

The tenant can terminate a tenancy either by serving a notice to quit a periodic tenancy, by exercising a break clause in a fixed tenancy, or by surrendering the tenancy. A court order has to be obtained to end a secure tenancy. Depending upon the type of tenance various methods can be used to end a secure tenancy.

  • If it is a Fixed term Tenancy the landlord must obtain a termination order under s.82
  • If it is a Periodic Tenancy the landlord must follow the notice procedure contained in s.83 and serve a Notice of Seeking Possession which must:
    1. State a date after which the proceedings may be begun (this date must be no earlier than the tenancy could have been determined at common law
    2. State the ground or grounds on which possession is sought giving particulars of the ground(s)

Non Secure Tenancy more...

The most common use of non-secure tenancies are temporary accommodation for homeless people provided by local authorities.

Termination And Possession more...

In order to terminate, and gain possession of, a non-secure tenancy, the landlord is not required to prove any statutory ground. All that is required is for the landlord to serve on the tenant a valid Notice to Quit and thereafter, a claim for possession can be applied for. The tenancy will then end on the date sstated in the court order for possession.

Two further points should be mentioned in relation to gaining possession of non-secure tenancies:

  • It should be noted that, although no statutory ground need be proven, the landlord must act reasonably when appying to evict the tenant. There must be some rational reason for the desire to gain possession; otherwise the tenant may succeed in a judicial review of the landlord's decision
  • Further, as a result of the tenant's limited protection under such a tenancy, the court is likely to be very strict in ensuring the NTQ provisions have been adhered to. In particular, judges are keen to make certain that the tenant received a copy of the NTQ. In well-drafted tenancies, there is normally a clause specifying that the NTQ will be deemed to have been served on the tenant provided it is left at the property. However, without such a clause, the landlord will have to serve the tenant personally or else confirm with the tenant that he/she has received the NTQ by some other method

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