Types of Tenancy

Your Tenancy Agreement

Your tenancy agreement is a legal contract between you and your housing association. It lists your rights and and responsibilities and you must read it carefully. Ask us if there is anything you do not understand. Keep your copy of your tenancy agreement in a safe place.

Assured Tenancies

You can stay in your home for as long as possible with an assured tenancy, as long as you do not breach your tenancy agreement. You cannot be evicted from your home except by a Court Order. Your rent is set by your housing association according to Government guidelines, and reviewed annually. When you die, a family member may be eligible to succeed your tenancy if they have been living in the property for at least 12 months immediately prior to your death. proof of residency will be required. However, if the property is under occupied they may be re-housed into suitable smaller accommodation. See your tenants handbook for more information on your rights.

Affordable Rents Tenancies

Affordable Rents were introduced by the Government to help finance the building of new homes with little or no grant funding. Although affordable rents are more expensive than social rents, they are more affordable than renting at full market rent. The rent we will charge will be up to 80% of the current market rent, including service charges.

Most new build properties, and a proportion of our existing properties when they are re-let will be set at an affordable rent. We will carry out a financial assessment to ensure the rent is affordable to each applicant and signpost for specialist advice if necessary. When we advertise the properties on HomePoint, they will clearly be marked 'Affordable Rent'. It will also be clearly stated in your offer letter and in your tenancy agreement.

Rent

The rent will be reviewed annually by your housing association, and set in accordance with Government guidelines. Each time we set a new affordable rent we will always review the rent to make sure it does not exceed 80% of market rent. 

Starter Tenancies

A starter tenancy is offered to new tenants. After the successful completion of the starter period, which usually lasts for 12 months, the tenant will be offered a five year fixed term tenancy. If, during the starter period, a new tenant breaks any of their obligations, their tenancy will be ended and they will have to give up possession of their home. In certain circumstances the starter period may be extended for a further 12 months.

Rent

The rent will be reviewed annually by your housing association, and set in accordance with Government guidelines.

Tenancy

Starter tenancies are used to make sure new tenants understand the importance of keeping to the terms of their tenancy agreement. Just as tenants have a right to expect us to observe all of our responsibilities to them under the tenancy, we have a right o expect our tenants to observe all of their responsibilities. For example:

  • by paying the rent on time
  • by looking after their home
  • by allowing us to visit and carry out repairs

When we offer you a home we will tell you if we are offering you a starter tenancy. If we do, it means that you will be 'on probation' for a period of one year. You should not worry that you are being offered a starter tenancy. Provided you do not break any of the terms of the tenancy agreement during your starter period, you will be offered a five year fixed term tenancy after 12 months. There are some other differences to a starter tenancy, these are:

  • If a tenant who holds a starter tenancy breaks any of their obligations under the tenancy agreement it is easier for us to end their tenancy
  • A tenant who holds a starter tenancy will not have the same rights to exchange or pass on their tenancy
  • A tenant who holds a starter tenancy may not take in lodgers or otherwise sublet part of their home
  • Where applicable, a tenant who holds a starter tenancy has no right to acquire their home

Review

As long as we are happy that you have kept to the terms of your tenancy agreement and have not taken any steps to end your tenancy, you will automatically be offered a five year fixed term tenancy after 12 months.

Where breaches of the tenancy have been identified, we may decide to extend the starter tenancy for a further six months or issue a 2 year fixed term tenancy. This is intended to encourage the tenant to comply with the terms and conditions of their tenancy agreement. At the same time, we aim to deliver a strong message that their behaviour is unacceptable, and could lead to them losing their home.

If we decide to end your tenancy we will tell you in writing. At this stage we will also inform you of your right to appeal against our decision and we will provide you with details of how you can appeal, the appeals process and how you can expect your appeal to be dealt with.

Fixed Term Tenancies

This type of tenancy will be offered for a fixed period of time rather than a tenancy that can be in place for life. These tenancies will generally be for five years, and are assured short hold fixed term tenancies. If you have a fixed term tenancy, you have the same rights as any other tenant of South Shropshire Housing Association and Meres & Mosses Housing Association, except for the following:

  • You have no right to acquire your home under any legislation allowing tenants of social landlords to buy some or all of their home
  • You have no right to allow anyone other than your spouse or partner to take over your tenancy if you die

Review

We will work with you throughout your tenancy and towards the end of each fixed term, there will be a tenancy review. This review looks at whether the home still meets your needs and makes sure that you have stuck to the tenancy conditions. the outcome of the final review will decide whether we offer a new five year fixed term tenancy.

If your review has been successful, we will issue you with another five year fixed term tenancy. If it has been partly successful we will consider issuing you a further two year fixed term tenancy. If your review has been unsuccessful, and we have decided not to issue you with a new fixed term tenancy we will offer advice and assistance to help you find a new home.

We can normally only end your tenancy early if you do not comply with your obligations under the tenancy agreement.

Ending your tenancy

If you wish to end your tenancy, you can do so at any time by giving us four weeks written notice that you wish to surrender your tenancy. If you have a joint tenancy, the notice must be signed by both/all tenants. We may not accept your notice if any of your obligations under the terms of the tenancy have not been met, for example, if you owe us money or are in breach of another obligation under the terms of your tenancy agreement.