This translation has been provided by Google Translate. Translation Disclaimer
Your fixed term tenancy agreement is very important. It sets out the legal rights and responsibilities that you have as the tenant and we have as the landlord. Your tenancy agreement is a legal document and you should keep it in a safe place.
If you’ve successfully completed your starter tenancy with us, you may receive a fixed term tenancy. This is an assured shorthold tenancy and is intended to last for a fixed period of time. We normally issue five year fixed term tenancies. Fixed term tenancies are different from the ‘lifetime’ tenancies, which have no set end date.
Paying your rent is a priority and must be paid in full, in advance and on time. We use the money we receive in rent to build new homes, carry out repairs and provide services.
You can pay your rent by Direct Debit, standing order, over the phone, using our website, or in person at Post Offices and other outlets with e-pay or PayPoint facilities. If you receive a benefit to help you with your rent payments, you must let us know.
If you can’t pay your rent on time, please get in touch with us straight away. There are lots of ways we can help. We will hopefully be able to come to an arrangement for you to repay any arrears (rent you owe us) before they get too big. However, where we cannot come to a satisfactory arrangement with you, we may have to take legal action to get the money we are owed. This is a serious step and may result in ending your tenancy.
We can help you access support and advice around your money, such as checking that you are getting all of the benefits you are entitled to and getting money advice to help you maximise your income.
As a fixed term tenant you have a number of important rights which are all set out in your tenancy agreement. Please get in touch with us if you have any questions or have a look at our website.
You may have the right to swap your home with another Circle Housing tenant or with a tenant of another housing association or council. It can be a good option if you want to move but do not want to spend time on a waiting list.
If you want to go ahead with a swap, you must contact us for our permission. If you wish to swap with another housing association or council tenant, they must also get permission from their landlord.
We run House Exchange, a free website for people who want to swap their homes: www.houseexchange.org.uk
We will normally agree a joint tenancy for:
If you and your partner have a joint starter tenancy with us you can have a joint fixed term tenancy as well. Both tenants must sign the fixed term tenancy agreement at the tenancy sign up as we will not allow joint fixed term tenancies to be created during the period of the fixed term.
If your starter tenancy wasn’t a joint tenancy, you can create a joint fixed term tenancy at the fixed term tenancy sign-up if you are married or in a civil partnership or if you have been living in the property with your partner for at least nine months.
If you want to end your joint fixed term tenancy, both joint tenants will need to agree this in writing, including who will keep the tenancy in their sole name. If there are no tenancy breaches or rent arrears, we’ll normally agree to this.
You have the right to take in a lodger. A lodger is a person who lives as part of the home. They would usually share some rooms with you (e.g. the kitchen, living room and bathroom) for an agreed payment of a weekly or monthly charge.
You don’t need permission but you do need to let us know if you’re thinking of taking on a lodger. We can provide guidance about the important things to think about first. Remember, it is illegal to sub-let the whole of your home.
It may be possible for someone to take over your tenancy when you die. This is called ‘succession’. If there is a joint tenancy, the remaining tenant will inherit the tenancy. If there is no joint tenancy, the tenancy passes to your spouse, civil partner or co-habiting partner (including same a sex partner) who was living with you at the time of death.
In some circumstances where there is no partner, we may permit a family member or vulnerable household member to succeed.
You also have the right to transfer your tenancy to someone who would be entitled to succeed. This is called an ‘assignment’. You must get our written permission to do this and you must be prepared to give up your right to be re-housed by us.
When someone takes on your tenancy by succession or assignment, they will take it on for the remainder of time left on it. After this, we will check that they still need the property before we decide whether to offer them a new fixed term tenancy or not.
It is really important that you let us know if you are having problems with your tenancy as soon as possible. We can try to help you sort out the problem or get the right help. If we think you have broken the terms of your tenancy agreement, we will investigate and take action to resolve. We will contact you to discuss the problem and what you can do to put things right.
But if there has been a serious breach of your tenancy, we may take action to end the tenancy.
If you want to leave the property before your fixed term tenancy ends, you must let us know in writing. If you have a joint tenancy then you both must agree and sign the letter informing us that you wish to leave.
In most cases, we will agree to you leaving if you give four weeks’ notice, have a clear rent account and leave the property (and garden) in a good condition. If you are thinking about moving out before your tenancy ends, you need to get in touch with us.