What Are My Rights and Responsibilities as a Tenant? in Rights
Information on tenancy rights and what responsibilities you have when renting from a landlord.
When you rent accommodation from a landlord, you have a number of rights as a tenant and you will have a contract.
You have a number of basis rights when you move into accommodation, regardless of the contract or tenancy agreements you have with your landlord.
What are my rights?
Your basic rights include:
- the right to live in a property that’s safe and in a good state.
- receiving your deposit back when your tenancy ends.
- being able to challenge any charges you deem to be excessively high.
- being protected from unfair eviction and unfair rent.
- to not be treated unfairly because of your disability, gender, pregnancy, race, religion, sex or sexual orientation.
What are my responsibilities?
As a tenant you have a number of rights, but you also have responsibilities to uphold too. These include:
- taking good care of the property.
- paying the agreed rent, even if repairs are needed or you are in dispute with the landlord.
- paying charges as agreed with the landlord in your tenancy agreement, for example, utility bills or council tax.
- repairing or paying for any damage that you have caused.
If you don’t fulfil these responsibilities, your landlord has the right to take legal action or even evict you.
For more information on your rights and responsibilities when renting privately visit the Gov.uk website.
Eviction is complicated, but to put it simply, your landlord has to have reasons and a court order before you can be evicted. Non-payment of rent is one indisputable reason for eviction, as is damaging property or having frequent loud parties. However, no matter what the reason there are procedures your landlord must take.
If you are facing eviction or are being threatened with it, the first thing you should do is call the Shelter helpline on 0808 800 4444 (Mon to Fri 9am - 5pm) to get help and advice. You should also check out the Shelter website as they have a section specifically for young people with information lots of housing issues and dilemmas.
Your landlord is not allowed to harass you into leaving by doing things like cutting off your utilities or showing up in your flat unannounced. If this is happening, it is harassment and it’s illegal. Call the police or get advice from Shelter.
What is a tenancy agreement?
When you move into new accommodation you will have a tenancy agreement which is a contract between you and your landlord. This agreement will give additional rights to both you and your landlord. This can be a written or an oral agreement.
For more information on tenancy agreements, visit the Advice Guide website.