Everything you need to know about the new tenancy agreements

rental agreement form

The talking is finally over, the decisions have been made and it’s all change for agreements between landlords and tenants.

Until now private tenancies have been under the assured tenancy regime, with the majority being short assured tenancies.

As of December 1, however, we’ll see the introduction of the Private Residential Tenancy – or PRT for short.

The aim of the new system is to provide more security, stability and predictability for tenants and extra safeguards for landlords and investors.

Hopefully, it’s a win-win situation for everyone.

Existing short assured and assured tenancies will continue but all new tenancies granted in the private rented sector will be private residential tenancies, which introduces a uniform system for the first time.

So what do the changes actually mean for tenants and landlords?

Single dates

Tenancies will be open-ended to give more security to tenants. So there will no longer be a fixed tenancy period. The only date that will be stated on the agreement will be the start date.

Stable prices

Another significant change for tenants is there will be protection from frequent rent increases. Rent cannot go up more than once a year and three months notice must be given of any increase. This means tenants can plan finances more easily.

New notices

There will be a change to notice periods. Once a tenant has been in a rental for six months, 84 days’ notice to leave must be given by a landlord. If a tenant has been living in the property for less than six months or breaks a condition of the tenancy, for example by behaving in an anti-social manner (tut-tut!), the notice period is 28 days.

The blame game

If a tenant believes they’ve been misled into moving out, it will be possible to apply to a first-tier tribunal for a wrongful termination order.

The “no fault” ground for repossession will be removed so landlords cannot end a tenancy unless one of 18 grounds for possession apply.

For landlords, the new system does away with confusing pre-tenancy notices. It also gives the ability to refer a case for repossession more swiftly in the case of rent arrears.

Modern living

The 18 grounds for possession have been modernised and are much more relevant to today. They now include scenarios such as when the property has been abandoned and when the landlord intends to sell.

Taken as a whole, the changes are intended to make the business of letting and renting easier and more straightforward for everyone. For more information please check the Scottish Government site.

Are you looking to rent? To find the best rental properties in your area, check out s1homes.

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