Maximum Length of an AST Agreement

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    Maximum Length of an AST Agreement

    Hi,

    Can anyone tell me what the maximum length of time you can grant an AST Agreement for please.

    Thanks

    #2
    There is no maximum length of time. However, it is not really advisable to have any fixed term for longer than around a year, either for tenant or landlord. Can I ask what the circumstances are surrounding your question?
    Any posts by myself are my opinion ONLY. They should never be taken as correct or factual without confirmation from a legal professional. All information is given without prejudice or liability.

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      #3
      It's actually 5 years - up to three years it can be done by ordinary contract, but for terms in excess of that, it must be by deed.

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        #4
        Thanks. I can't seem to find any reference to the 5 year maximum term but knew about it needed to be created by deed on an AST over 3 years.

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          #5
          Doh...thanks david....could you post me a link if you have one where it refers to that? All the info I could find said an AST could be of any length.
          Any posts by myself are my opinion ONLY. They should never be taken as correct or factual without confirmation from a legal professional. All information is given without prejudice or liability.

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            #6
            There is no maximum length but it is meant to be for a relatively short period otherwise why would it be called an Assured Shorthold Tenancy?

            These are the defining lengths of the term where matters can change:-
            1. For a term of 3 years or under it does not have to be witnessed and can be drawn up by a landlord & tenant quite simply.
            2. Over 3 years then it does have to be signed as a deed and witnessed.
            3. If you want to grant a tenancy of more than 7 years then you should use a tenancy at common law as you could make a tenant responsible for all repairs if you wanted to! (quite common in commercial tenancies). You would need to ensure it does not come under the Landlord & Tenant Act 1954 or you could be stuck with the tenant.
            4. For tenancies over 21 years then different rules apply.
            The moral is therefore keep it short!
            The advice I give should not be construed as a definitive answer, and is without prejudice or liability. You are advised to consult a specialist solicitor or other person of equal legal standing.

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              #7
              I stand corrected - though when the original shorthold tenancies were created they were to be a maximum of 5 years - that seems to have been repealed or replaced because I too could find no references to it!

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                #8
                If someone has entered into a 10 year AST and it has been executed properly as a deed etc does that means the landlord can't use S21 to recover possession until the end of the fixed term?

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                  #9
                  Originally posted by settloe_99 View Post
                  If someone has entered into a 10 year AST and it has been executed properly as a deed etc does that means the landlord can't use S21 to recover possession until the end of the fixed term?
                  It does indeed - unless there is a landlord's break clause.

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                    #10
                    Originally posted by settloe_99 View Post
                    If someone has entered into a 10 year AST and it has been executed properly as a deed etc does that means the landlord can't use S21 to recover possession until the end of the fixed term?
                    Originally posted by Lawcruncher View Post
                    It does indeed - unless there is a landlord's break clause.
                    That's true of any fixed-term AST, of course.
                    JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
                    1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
                    2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
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                      #11
                      1. What might be the possible consequences of issuing a 6 month AST, which then just rolls on and on - eg for much longer than 5 years?

                      2. If the 5 years limit is aproaching, could you issue a new 6 month AST to the same tenants at 4y 11m, and let that roll for another 5 years?

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                        #12
                        Originally posted by unhappydisgustingWOW View Post
                        1. What might be the possible consequences of issuing a 6 month AST, which then just rolls on and on - eg for much longer than 5 years?

                        2. If the 5 years limit is aproaching, could you issue a new 6 month AST to the same tenants at 4y 11m, and let that roll for another 5 years?
                        The limits are on tenancy agreements, not tenancies. A SPT is, in effect, a new tenancy agreement every month so that won't be an issue.

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                          #13
                          Originally posted by unhappydisgustingWOW View Post
                          1. What might be the possible consequences of issuing a 6 month AST, which then just rolls on and on - eg for much longer than 5 years?
                          The tenancy would simply continue (under the same terms as the original agreement) on a periodic basis after the initial fixed term.

                          Originally posted by unhappydisgustingWOW View Post
                          2. If the 5 years limit is aproaching, could you issue a new 6 month AST to the same tenants at 4y 11m, and let that roll for another 5 years?
                          There is no 5 year limit for AST's in England or Wales -read post #6.
                          The information in my posts is provided 'as is'. This is not intended to be legal advice. Legal or other professional advice should be sought before acting or relying on this information or any part of it. I will not be held responsible for loss or damage arising from errors in the information or the way in which a person uses the information on this . For more information on your query use the '' link at the top of this page. Agreements, Forms & Notices can be found .

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                            #14
                            Ah ok, I was getting confused.

                            So I could issue a 6 month AST, allow it to fall into SPT and just let it keep rolling like that for 30 years, whilst still having all the rights to evict with 2 months notice (assuming no changes in law of course).

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                              #15
                              Originally posted by unhappydisgustingWOW View Post
                              Ah ok, I was getting confused.

                              So I could issue a 6 month AST, allow it to fall into SPT and just let it keep rolling like that for 30 years, whilst still having all the rights to evict with 2 months notice (assuming no changes in law of course).
                              Yes, but with SPT tenant has the right to go with one months notice - ie they're not tied in either.

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