Adding a permitted occupier or additional tenant post initial tenancy

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    Adding a permitted occupier or additional tenant post initial tenancy

    One of our managed properties, the tenants have moved in an additional person not named on the contract or known to us at the time.

    The tenants are happy to add this new person to the tenancy agreement but I have two questions I would like answered.

    1. Should this person be a named tenant or classed as a permitted occupier? Does it really matter if the two tenants who have been there for at least 3 years now have been good payers and see no reason why that would change.

    2. In signing a new/amended agreement, does it have to be for a minimum of 6 months again or can the rolling period tenancy continue with no new fixed term? (this question is also applicable to another tenancy albeit in different circumstances - tenant struggling financially so moved in someone to help with the rent but doesn't want to commit to a new 6 month term due to the insecurity of their job due to a recent injury preventing them from working - call this question 2b if there are any direct answers to this scenario).

    Many thanks in advance for your assistance.

    #2
    Are you a letting agent or the property owner in this case?

    1. Do not add anyone to a tenancy until you have credit checked and referenced them. New person could run up big lecky bills gaming all night or whatever and refuse to pay, or not pay towards council tax or rent. That is why if they are going to reside there they should be on the tenancy so they are ALL 'jointly and severally liable' for the rent and outgoings and then you know they all agree to this person being part of the agreement.

    2. I would get them all to sign a new 6 month AST. You could always agree to let the one who may have to leave surrender their agreement but then you would have to get a new person in and start all over again. Don't forget to return deposit, take again and re-protect as well as serve PI to include the newcomer. Loads of paperwork.



    Freedom at the point of zero............

    Comment


      #3
      I am acting within a letting agent.

      1. This additional person is the sister of one of the tenants and the partner of the other. The two male's were friends who have been living together for 3+ years as I say. I get your point and normally I would 100% agree, but with the nature of their relationships, I'm wondering if there is a need. One thing I forgot to mention was that this tenancy in it's old form is covered by rent guarantee insurance and adding an additional tenant I don't think will be acceptable to the insurance company without going through the whole application process for the three of them again which means new credit referencing fees for all of them, not just the additional tenant. I want to help them out as they've been good tenants for over 3 years but if there is a legal reason for putting her as a tenant rather than a permitted occupier then we'll have to upset the apple cart and charge for more credit referencing than probably is necessary. In my mind a permitted occupier won't affect the rent guarantee insurance, whereas an additional tenant would, but are there any legal reasons for adding her as a tenant over a permitted occupier?

      2. Is this a response to 2 or 2b? If it is 2b, we have tried to get them to sign a new 6 month AST, but is there a legal requirement to do so just to add a person as permitted occupier. The landlord doesn't care, so long as he receives the rent so I need to know what the legal position is in terms of signing a change to the tenancy agreement. Does it have to have a new 6 month term or is that just an ideal resolution? Do you know what I mean?

      Thanks

      Comment


        #4
        The third person is a guest of the other two.
        They're not liable to pay rent or responsible for the property.
        Unless the landlord's BTL mortgage or insurance doesn't allow such guests I don't think there's a legal issue that stops tenants having guests.

        If the tenants want the third person to be part of the tenancy (and the 3rd person agrees);
        end the current tenancy.
        Do a complete check out, sort out any existing repairs etc and return the deposit.
        Start a completely new tenancy with the three names on it (with full credit checks etc) do complete inventory check in again and receive and re-protect the deposit etc.
        If the landlord and tenants want a new 6 months AST period - and they probably should - include one, otherwise it can be whatever AST period you want, including a month.
        When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
        Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

        Comment


          #5
          If you create a new tenancy with a new tenant (by adding the 3rd person) you will not be able to use s.21 for 6 months, which may not be an issue.

          As an agent, I sure you know that, though.

          Comment


            #6
            Evict due to breach of tenancy: Or why did you have a tenancy refusing other people living there?
            I am legally unqualified: If you need to rely on advice check it with a suitable authority - eg a solicitor specialising in landlord/tenant law...

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by gjhalfpenny View Post
              I am acting within a letting agent.

              2. Is this a response to 2 or 2b? If it is 2b, we have tried to get them to sign a new 6 month AST, but is there a legal requirement to do so just to add a person as permitted occupier. The landlord doesn't care, so long as he receives the rent so I need to know what the legal position is in terms of signing a change to the tenancy agreement. Does it have to have a new 6 month term or is that just an ideal resolution? Do you know what I mean?

              Thanks
              I, personally would not go down the permitted occupier route - others might and am always wary of making additions to ASTs. You could just let her stay on as a guest. I would do the 6 month AST with a view to letting the one thinking of moving out of the contract. If they have been in 3 years S21 unlikely to be necessary IMO.

              Owner only interested in the rent - yeah and when he doesn't get it you will be first in the firing line.

              Am I doing your job for you?



              Freedom at the point of zero............

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by jjlandlord View Post
                If you create a new tenancy with a new tenant (by adding the 3rd person) you will not be able to use s.21 for 6 months, which may not be an issue.

                As an agent, I sure you know that, though.
                Are you saying jjlandlord, that I cannot create an AST with an added permitted occupier and have no fixed term...or are you just stating that creating a new AST (rather than amending an existing one) requires a minimum 6 months so it is like starting again - in which case yes I am aware of the security the tenant has for the fixed term. What I'm trying to find out is if in signing a new or amending an existing one, do I have to have a fixed term if the tenancy is already on a periodic or can I state the term on the contract as being monthly periodic?

                jpkeates, it seems as though you have given me the answer "it can be whatever AST period you want, including a month". So, as long as any fixed term has passed, there is no restriction to length of period in any new agreement.

                Interlaken, my understanding of a guest is someone who is a temporary visitor who does not exceed a certain number of consecutive nights (I want to say 5 off the top of my head) so by allowing a guest to stay as long as they want, surely, if I wanted to serve notice, I can only serve notice on the two tenants and the guest would be seen as a squatter as they are not even listed as a permitted occupier. My understanding of the permitted occupier was that in serving the tenant notice, any permitted occupier has no right to stay on after the tenant vacates so you have most of the benefits as if they are a tenant when it comes to eviction without them being liable for any costs as that is the tenant's duty. It basically gives them what they want without us losing control over who occupies the property.

                Any comments on my thoughts are welcome. I appreciate it all as I'm trying to make sure we do things right.

                Comment


                  #9
                  The AST can be any length, but you cannot repossess using s21 until a minimum of 6 months have elapsed.
                  So even if the assured period was (say) two months, a section 21 notice could only become effective after 6 months.

                  If the tenants aren't prepared to commit to a reasonable length of tenancy, don't do anything.
                  Its a lot of trouble for no benefit.
                  When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
                  Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

                  Comment

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