Tenancy agreements can differ depending on what you want to outline in a tenancy. Therefore landlords, property managers and letting agents all need to have knowledge of them reasonably well. Missing out on crucial bits of information in the template can result in legal issues and potentially having to redo the agreement.
Read on to make certain that you can get a tenancy agreement completed the first time. Nailing down the topic so you can move forward with confidence.
What are Tenancy Agreement Templates?
A tenancy agreement template is a professional piece of legal documentation that outlines the details of the rules around the lease between the landlord and the tenant. Some of these rules have to be there under government regulation whereas others are there for the preference of the landlord or tenant.
At the start of a new tenancy, all tenants must receive a copy of the document. This includes issuing copies to every tenancy in a joint tenancy agreement for example. Tenancy agreements, therefore, become a mandatory document that must be issued.
Is a tenancy agreement always necessary?
Having a tenancy agreement in place isn’t always necessary. However, it is in the landlord’s and tenant’s best interest to sign one. Especially for more protected tenancies like assured tenancies and regulated tenancies.
If you don’t sign a tenancy agreement you could find it hard to evict a tenant as a landlord and it may be hard to prove to the court that the behaviour of a tenant warrants an eviction. In addition, without terms like break clauses, tenancy deposits and rules around subletting written down formally, any disputes will be extremely hard to resolve if taken to court.
As a result, before a tenant moves into a property, it is always recommended to sign a tenancy agreement even if you think you trust the tenant or the agreement is more relaxed like in a lodging agreement.
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What information do you need in a tenancy agreement?
In a tenancy agreement, a tenancy agreement must include the following terms as a mandatory guide:
The length of the agreement
First of all, the length of a tenancy must be included in the agreement. It is important to lay this out clearly because after the initial length of a contract runs out, a tenant must be made aware the tenancy will be converted to a rolling tenancy where rent is paid at regular intervals.
In addition to the length, you must also include how many break clauses should be in a tenancy and at what time period. For example, a tenancy agreement can have a length of three years with break clauses every 6 months.
Finally, as part of the information about the length of the tenancy, there must be information given about the notice period too. This depends on the type of tenancy agreement and the time period in which rent is paid.
The amount of rent due
As expected, the amount of rent that is expected to be paid by tenants must be included in the agreement. As well as this the time period must be stated. Most commonly rent is paid every month but this can also be every week, quarter or every two months.
Names, addresses, contact details, dates of birth and phone numbers of the landlord and tenant should all be recorded on the tenancy agreement too. On top of this, if there is a guarantor for the tenant, their details should be noted down.
Also, if the property is being sublet in an excluded tenancy agreement or there are joint tenants in the property, all the names of these additional tenants should be written down.
Some landlords also may include any permitted occupiers in the property such as the spouse of the person paying the rent or children living with them.
Details around the tenancy deposit
The tenancy deposit is a lump sum of money that has to be protected by the landlord after the tenant pays. The amount the deposit is alongside where the deposit is protected must be recorded.
Utility bill details
As with every property, there are other bills that are involved in the living costs of a property. This includes things like gas costs, electricity costs and maybe broadband costs. It should be stated clearly what the tenant would be expected to pay with an estimate of costs.
There are no laws around this so what a tenant pays towards utility bills is completely up to the discretion of the landlord.
Reasons for termination of a tenancy
Finally, termination reasons for the tenancy must be stated such as rent arrears or damage to the property. This should be stated clearly to help tenants take care of the property.
What E-signing solutions for Tenancy Agreement Templates are there?
There are also a few free solutions like Eversign and Sign request.
What Are Electronic Signatures?
Electronic signatures are legally binding signatures that can be signed online and transmitted to show the verification that a tenant or landlord has approved the document.
They are becoming increasingly popular for landlords and tenants as they are easier to send and a tenant can sign an agreement long before they move in without being in proximity to the landlord or letting agent.
Alternative names for tenancy agreements
If you don’t usually call a tenancy agreement a tenancy agreement, some other common names include:
- An assured shorthold tenancy (AST)
- Lease agreements
It shouldn’t matter what name you give the tenancy agreement as long as all the relevant information is included in the document so you are covered legally in case something were to go wrong.
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We hope this guide on tenancy agreement templates is of use and you are able to gain valuable information on how to set up an agreement for yourself.
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