Tenancy Agreement

Oral Tenancy Agreement

An oral Tenancy Agreement is an oral/verbal agreement made between landlord and tenant, and where no Tenancy Agreement has been written down in a contract.

The primary aspects of the tenancy agreement is typically discussed and understood by both parties before the tenancy begins. Whether the tenancy agreement is written in a contract or solely discussed verbally, the same conditions are agreed:

  • Property Details: The address details of the property being rented.
  • Term: The start and end date of the tenancy. This is usually referred to as the “fixed term”
  • Rent: This should include the amount of rent to be paid, the method and the date of payment.
  • Deposit: This should include the amount of the deposit to be paid (if applicable), and what the deposit will cover.
  • Depsoit Scheme: This should cover the Tenancy Deposit Scheme the deposit is secured in.
  • Landlord’s Obligations: This should cover the responsibilities of the Landlord.
  • Tenant’s Obligations: This should cover the responsibilities of the Tenant.
  • Other Special Provisions: This should include any other special provisions agreed upon between the parties, such as pets, smoking, sub-letting, etc.

Verbal/Oral Tenancy Agreements are perfectly legal, although they are not recommended as there is no way of proving what was agreed. For example, if there is a dispute between landlord and tenant about the rent, it can be difficult to make a clear ruling on who is right because there is often no proof of what has been agreed.

There can also be legitimate cases where the tenant or landlord genuinely forgot what had been agreed. The problems that can occur with oral agreements aren’t always sinister, but nonetheless, it’s still a major problem. Consequently, it is always advised to have a tenancy agreement in writing to ensure both landlord and tenant are completely aware of their rights and responsibilities.

Like with every assured shorthold tenancy, both landlord and tenant have statutory rights, regardless of whether the agreement is oral or written. These rights are stipulated in the Housing Act 1988, Housing Act 1996, and Housing Act 2004.