An assured shorthold tenancy is a term commonly used within the property industry. This agreement involves both landlords and tenants and ensures protection for both parties. In this blog, investment consultant, Michael Johns addresses the definition of an AST, how it can affect landlords and tenants, and gives some advice on how to deal with this kind of agreement.
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Please see below the full transcript of the video:
Hi and welcome to Ask Johnsy. In this Ask Johnsy, we’re going to be asking what is an AST?
I’m terrible for this because when I’m speaking to all of my clients, I’m always saying AST-this AST-that and some of them haven’t got a clue about what I’m talking about. An AST is an assured shorthold tenancy and actually most tenancy agreements default to an AST. It’s the most common. It was introduced in the Housing Act of 1988 and came in on the 15th January 1989. It’s an agreement between a landlord and a tenant and it’s really to protect both parties while the tenant is living at that property. So, it normally lasts 6 months to 12 months and it’s for a fixed period. After that time, the landlord can reclaim the property or they can extend the tenancy, or they can allow the tenancy to become periodic which is effectively the same as what’s called a rolling contract.
As I say, most tenancy agreements default to an AST. They apply to private landlords and housing associations. You can not be living in the house yourself as a landlord. It must be the tenant’s main accommodation as well, that’s a prerequisite. Just a couple of things that are largely irrelevant in most cases, but rent can not exceed £100,000 a year and it must be more than £250 a year or £1000 a year in London. It can not be a business tenancy; it can not be a licensed premise and it can not be a holiday-let and the landlord can not be the local council.
A bit of advice here, ASTs, always get them in writing. They legally have to be in Scotland but in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, they can be verbal, and a lot of people will do a verbal AST thinking that they know their tenant and they know that nothing’s going to come of it. But, more often than not, these do lead to problems and always remember that dispute resolution is always easier with a written agreement. So, if you’ve got any questions at all on tenancy agreements, ask our team at Residential Estates, we’ve been doing it for a long time, and we can certainly help you out. And thanks for listening to Ask Johnsy.
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