Tenancy Agreement

Joint Tenancy Agreements

What is a Joint Tenancy?

A joint tenancy is where you have two or more people under the same tenancy, with all of the individuals having exclusive possession of the whole property together, and share equal rights to the property.

This is a legal agreement between all tenants and the landlord. All tenants are responsible for keeping to all of the terms and conditions in the Tenancy Agreement.

A joint tenancy is not the same as a ‘tenants in common’, although they are similar and often confused.

Tenants in common
Similarly to a joint tenancy, there are two or more tenants under same tenancy. However, each tenant has exclusive possession of a specific bedroom in the property, addition to the use of the other communal areas.

Requirements for Joint Tenancy

  • Each tenant must be at least 16yrs old
  • All the Tenants must hold the tenancy under one legal document
  • The start and termination dates must be the same for all the tenants
  • All tenants must have equal rights to the entire property
  • All the Tenants must be entitled to possession of the entire property

Liability of Joint Tenants

All tenants in a Joint Tenancy are usually jointly liable for any rent arrears and/or damages to the property. This means if any one or more of the joint tenants’ breach any of the terms of the tenancy agreement, the Landlord can claim against individual tenants or all of them jointly. This is seen as a great advantage for the Landlord regarding security.

Joint Tenancy Guarantor

Each tenant can have a different Guarantor, which provides further security for the Landlord.

Changing Joint Tenants

If one or more of the joint tenants wants to leave the property and/or there are new tenants wanting to take the empty place(s), a new tenancy will need to be concluded. This can be done either by way of a Deed of Variation that will be attached to the Tenancy Agreement, or a completely new Tenancy Agreement can be drawn up.

Ending a Joint Tenancy

To end a joint tenancy, every joint tenant must give an individual notice in writing. This is assuming that the notice adheres to the termination date and notice period stipulated in the tenancy agreement.

If there are arrears when ending the joint tenancy

As said, liability is shared equally between all joint tenants. If any rent is owed when ending a tenancy, each and every tenant will be held responsible. This is why it is important to be careful when opting to be a joint tenant with other individuals.