When deciding to rent a room to a lodger, it’s important to consider the tenancy agreement you have in place. Making sure you have the necessary protection for you, your home and the lodger is essential. A written contract, or Lodger Tenancy Agreement, should be signed by both parties prior to the tenancy start date. Take a look at this guide to understand what should be included in a lodgers agreement and how it can help protect you and your property.
What Is a Lodgers Tenancy Agreement?
Unlike an Assured Short hold Tenancy (AST), the landlord in a lodgers agreement is a live-in landlord who shares a property with the lodger. There may be common, communal areas of the home but the lodger usually rents a bedroom as their own personal space. The lodger agreement is a formal, written document which outlines what has been agreed between the landlord and lodger, including the start and end dates of the agreement and the rights and responsibilities of each party. This should be agreed on and signed by both parties.
What Should Be Included in a Lodgers Tenancy Agreement?
The agreement should cover key details such as the term of the tenancy, an inventory to protect your furnishings and contents, fees and payment frequency as well as detailing whether bills are included or excluded. It should also outline the common areas of the home, house rules you may wish to apply, confirmation of the necessary gas safety checks as well as notice periods and termination of the agreement.
How Long Can the Agreement Last?
Lodgers agreements may be fixed term, for example 6 or 12 month terms which can be extended at any time. Or a rolling contract can be set with no end date. For rolling tenancy agreements, it’s important to set out the notice period you require before the agreement comes to an end. This should be at least 7 days but could be more depending on the contract.
Ending a Lodgers Agreement
If your agreement or notice period has ended, the lodger can be evicted or asked to move on. If the lodgers agreement is breached in any way, the agreement may be broken before the end date of a fixed term contract. You must set out in the agreement how much notice and how the notice must be given, should your lodger wish to end their tenancy.
Who Is Responsible for Repairs and Maintenance?
The landlord should be responsible for fixing any problems throughout the home. The lodgers agreement can set out what must be repaired within the communal and private areas of the home. Gas appliances must be checked annually by a Gas Safe engineer as part of the landlord responsibilities.