Choosing rooms: 12-month AST Joint Tenancy

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    Choosing rooms: 12-month AST Joint Tenancy

    I recently set up my first Joint Tenancy and am facing some issues. I have a joint tenancy agreement with my 5 tenants but the tenants are not friends - I found a person for each room, then they signed the joint tenancy together. Now two are moving out at the end of the tenancy. The rent is equal for all rooms. I prefer to find the tenants myself and decide who lives in the property. One of my existing tenants wants to move into one of the empty bedrooms at the end of the lease. I am very annoyed as this is slightly bigger and easier to rent, and I told them that this is my decision. If a new tenant prefers the smaller room, fine, but otherwise I want to show the bigger room. They questioned why they can’t have the bigger bedroom, seeing as the rent is the same and the tenancy agreement doesn’t specify a room. Can I refuse to allow him to change room?

    #2
    Is it a true joint tenancy?

    Where in this joint tenancy does it state who is in what room & does this joint tenancy list how much each pays, please?
    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...

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      #3
      All 5 tenants sign one AST. It doesn’t specify which room. Can I specify which rooms on the joint tendency agreement? This would stop them switching rooms without my permission.

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        #4
        It specified that each person pays a certain amount.

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          #5
          IMO it is not a joint T but it is an HMO.

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            #6
            Each person is therefore jointly and severely liable for the rent of the other 4. You probably need to register it as a HMO and give each tenant an AST.
            does your lender allow this ?

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              #7
              If the tenants jointly rent the entire property, they get to decide who stays in what room, they're renting the property not the room.

              The two tenants can't leave and be replaced on a joint tenancy. Anyone who wants to leave needs to serve notice (after then end of the fixed term) which ends the tenancy for all of them. Some landlords try and reassign an ongoing tenancy to new people, but this is fraught with difficulty.

              There's only one rent in a joint tenancy, the individual amounts are simply an agreement between the occupants, it doesn't affect the tenancy otherwise.

              You have an HMO and these issues are usually resolved by a set of individual tenancy agreements appropriate to an HMO.

              Being blunt (rude), you really don't seem to know what you're doing.
              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).

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                #8
                A joint tenancy is not suitable for this type of set-up. Room only tenancies will allow you to end an individual tenancy without having to re-contract with everyone and to determine who gets which room and even to charge differential rents. There are of course downsides. You will have to pay the Council Tax and charge an inclusive rent, but overall I believe it works much better than trying to make 5 strangers jointly liable for each others actions.

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                  #9
                  I'm not surprised your tenant isn't happy, in his shoes I would think the same. Perhaps differential rent is the way to go. I agree it should be HMO.

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                    #10
                    Indeed:. HMO, needs a license.

                    As you've presumably got no HMO license then tenants (who may be viewing this thread on a free and open forum) they would be entitled to get ALL their rent returned under a rent repayment order. And any s21 invalid.

                    Apply for HMO license TODAY and start reading and doing courses on how to be a Landlord.

                    You might be somewhat shocked but having asked your question you've now a chance to reduce the HUGE damage you may well have created for yourself & your finances.

                    Time for a stiff drink?

                    Ps I'm sure we've all made mistakes. I certainly did when I started and thought I knew what I was doing. Ah, the arrogance and hubris.

                    Painful, long drawn out, expensive mistakes. Resolved to learn. Still learning, still making mistakes.
                    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...

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