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When you moved into your new home you signed a tenancy agreement with us. This sets out your responsibilities as our resident, as well as our duties as your landlord.
There are six types of tenancy that we offer:
If you are living in temporary accommodation (TA), you will be given either two types of tenancy: a Non-Secure Tenancy or an Assured-Shorthold Tenancy (Starter Tenancy – see below). A Non-Secure Tenancy is usually deemed by the council if a homeless household is placed in temporary accommodation.
A Starter Tenancy is given to new general needs residents who have not been housed by another social landlord. It normally lasts for 12 months, but this could be increased in certain situations. Once this time has passed, your agreement will become a Fixed Term Tenancy. A starter tenancy is like a probation period so it’s important that you adhere to your tenancy agreement, otherwise, you could be at risk of losing your home.
From January 2017, all residents who have completed their starter tenancies after 12 months will move to a Fixed Term Tenancy. This means that the tenancy is fixed for five years. After five years, we will review a resident’s circumstances to check whether their home and tenancy are still suitable. Your tenancy will be renewed if your circumstances have not changed, there is no over-occupation or under-occupation of a property or any adaptations that have been made to the home are still required.
An assured tenancy may also be known as a ‘lifetime tenancy’. If you have an assured tenancy, this means that your tenancy started after the housing was transferred to us in 1994. The main difference is that you do not have the right to buy your home, although you could have the right to acquire. This is similar to the right to buy but only applies to some of our properties and the discounts are different. Again, your tenancy will be on-going as long as you keep to the rules.
If you were a resident of Epsom and Ewell Borough Council before their housing was transferred to us in 1994 you will be a protected assured resident. You’ve got all the rights that you had with the council. The main one is having the right to buy your home at a discounted cost. You can find out more about the buying your home here. As long as you stick to the rules in your agreement, your tenancy will be on-going.
Joint tenancies are usually given to couples who live together. Being part of a joint tenancy means that both residents are responsible for sticking to the agreement. If one resident decided to leave, the other resident would need to pay all of the rent and you must have permission from the other resident in order to end a joint tenancy.
In some cases, joint tenancies are given to people who aren’t a recognised couple, like a mother and daughter. In this situation, any benefit claims must be made separately for their share of the rent.
If you wish to add another person to a tenancy or if you wish to revert to a sole tenancy, you must contact us in writing.