Joint Tenancies; What Happens When A Tenant Wants To Leave
This issue of one tenant wanting to leave a joint tenancy is quite a regular occurrence with landlords. Quite clearly, this can cause problems on both sides of the tenancy, especially if the other tenant wants to stay on. If you’re a landlord who is about to list your property via an online property agent or brick and mortar lettings agency and you’d like a rundown of you to solve this particular problem, then why not have a read of our handy little guide below.
What Is a Joint Tenancy Agreement
When a group of two or more people sign a tenancy, they’re equally responsible for rent. It is to be received as a single payment. If rent is not paid, all tenants are liable for the backlog. If one tenant decides to leave the property before the lease is up, then the others must leave too.
When it comes to non-payment of rent on the part of the tenant wishing to leave, the other tenants must pay it. If no payment has been given, they can be asked to pay rent in arrears. If these begin to build, they can be pursued through the courts to recover the debt owed.
The circumstances for a tenant leaving are usually a result of relationships. A break up between partners, a falling out between friends or colleagues – any of these issues can cause the remaining tenants’ rent to increase. A tenant leaving can also be the result of a job loss, or relocation to another city. No matter what the reason, you as the landlord hold the power and the tenants are bound to pay the rent for the duration of the tenancy.
Ending a Joint Tenancy
There are only two ways of tenants ending a tenancy early. One is if you included a break clause in the original tenancy agreement. The second is if the tenants agree to surrender the property.
If one or more tenants doesn’t want to leave, and instead want to remain in the property, a new tenancy agreement will have to be created, after a discussion. It’s important to note that the financial burdens on the part of your tenants will be increased, so if you’re concerned they’ll not be able to make up the extra rent, then you’re not compelled to allow them to stay.
Joint tenants are a single entity where a tenancy contract is concerned. If you want to evict one via a Section 8 or 21, all must leave. If there’s one troublesome tenant, all are responsible for them. Of course, you can offer the remaining tenants a new tenancy after the previous one has been annulled and the problem dealt with.
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February 12, 2021
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