Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement Continuation: What You Need to Know

As a tenant, you may be wondering what happens when your assured shorthold tenancy agreement ends. Will you need to move out? Can you extend your tenancy? And if so, what are the legal requirements?

In this article, we`ll explain everything you need to know about assured shorthold tenancy agreement continuation, so you can plan ahead and avoid any surprises.

What is an assured shorthold tenancy agreement?

An assured shorthold tenancy (AST) is the most common type of tenancy agreement in the UK. It gives tenants the right to live in a property for a fixed period, usually six or twelve months, with the option to renew the tenancy agreement at the end of the term.

An AST also provides certain legal protections for tenants, such as the right to a safe and habitable property, protection against rent increases during the fixed term, and the right to challenge unfair eviction.

When does an AST end?

The end of an AST is determined by the fixed term of the tenancy agreement. At the end of this term, the tenancy will automatically come to an end, unless the landlord and tenant agree to renew the tenancy agreement.

If you want to stay in the property beyond the end of the fixed term, it`s important to discuss this with your landlord well in advance. If you don`t agree on a new tenancy agreement, you may need to vacate the property and find a new place to live.

How to renew an AST

If you and your landlord agree to renew your AST, you will need to sign a new tenancy agreement. This can be a simple process, but there are some legal requirements that must be followed.

Firstly, your landlord must serve you with a Section 21 notice, which gives you at least two months` notice that they want to end the tenancy. This is a legal requirement, and failure to follow this process can make it difficult for your landlord to legally end the tenancy in the future.

Once the Section 21 notice has been served, you and your landlord can negotiate the terms of the new tenancy agreement. This may include changes to the rent, the length of the tenancy, or other terms and conditions.

It`s important to ensure that the new tenancy agreement complies with all legal requirements, such as health and safety regulations, deposit protection requirements, and other obligations set out in the Housing Act 1988.

What happens if you don`t renew your tenancy agreement?

If you don`t renew your tenancy agreement and you continue to live in the property, you will become a “periodic tenant”. This means that you will continue to live in the property on a month-to-month basis, but with no fixed term agreement.

As a periodic tenant, you will have fewer legal protections than under an AST. Your landlord can increase the rent, give you notice to vacate the property, or make other changes to the terms of your tenancy more easily.

If you want to avoid becoming a periodic tenant, it`s important to discuss your options with your landlord in advance of the end of your fixed term agreement.

Final thoughts

Assured shorthold tenancy agreement continuation can be a complex process, and it`s essential to understand your legal rights and obligations as a tenant.

If you`re unsure about the requirements for renewing your AST, or if you have any concerns about your tenancy agreement, it`s always best to seek advice from a legal professional or a specialist housing advisor. By doing so, you can ensure that you are well-informed and protected throughout the tenancy process.