Join the Residential Landlords Association

Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement (AST)

Download a free sample Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement

Create a guest account today to see a sample of our tenancy agreement

Create a guest account

Join the RLA and get free, unlimited access to all documents

One Off Payment

Download your Assured Tenancy Agreement today for just £9.50!

Completion notes included

When should you use this tenancy agreement?

This is the most commonly used form of tenancy agreement and will usually be the appropriate tenancy agreement for a landlord's needs.

It can be used for houses and flats as long as they are self-contained. It can also be used where a house or flat is rented as a whole to a group such as groups of students, young professionals, etc, even though these properties are houses in multiple occupancy (HMOs).

Do I need a different tenancy agreement?

Where you are protecting your tenant's deposit through DepositGuard, you should use the DepositGuard Compliant Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement instead.

If you are renting out individual rooms then normally the Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement - Room Only is the appropriate form. If you are renting out an individual room and protecting your deposit through DepositGuard, then you should use the DepositGuard Room Only Tenancy Agreement.

In some circumstances, an assured shorthold tenancy agreement of any type would be the wrong type of agreement. The RLA has a number of other types of tenancy agreement to cover these circumstances so where you are letting your property to a company, you are thinking of getting a lodger for your own home, or you need a non-assured tenancy agreement we have the right tenancy agreement for you.

What type of tenancy does this create?

The tenancy created by this agreement is an assured shorthold tenancy (AST) within the Housing Act 1988.

Do I need to protect the deposit?

Any deposit paid must be protected under one of the Government approved tenancy deposit schemes.

How do I end this tenancy?

You can use the Section 21 procedure to obtain possession. In the event of tenancy arrears or other tenancy breach you will need to serve a Section 8 notice (e.g. relying Ground 8 for rent arrears).

Why should I use the RLA Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement?

The RLA Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement (AST) offers the following benefits:

What's new in the 2019 tenancies?

  • From June 1st 2019, landlords in England will be barred from charging most fees to tenants. The fees ban will come into force in a slightly different form in Wales from September 2019. The penalties for this can be severe, with fines of up to £30,000 or ban on serving section 21 for landlords or agents who try and charge a prohibited fee.
  • The RLA's 2019 tenancy has been amended to reflect the tenant fee ban. A number of clauses have been adjusted or removed so that landlords will not be in breach of the legislation.

In addition we have introduced a rent review clause. This clause allows landlords to agree how much the rent may increase by every 12 months. The landlord then serves a simple letter every 12 months rather than potentially having to go to tribunal to decide what rent is fair.Do I need a privacy notice?

From May 25th 2018 you must provide all of your current and new tenants and/or guarantors with your privacy notice. The RLA has created guidance on this, along with a sample privacy notice for use exclusively by our members.

What else do I need before I sign this tenancy?

Many experienced landlords and agents get into the good habit of providing a welcome pack for their tenants to sign prior to them moving in. This lets the tenant know all of their responsibilities, but it also protects the landlord by covering everything they are legally required to do beforehand.

A good welcome pack should include:

In addition to the welcome pack, you should never sign the tenancy agreement, or hand over the keys, until you have successfully completed your referencing and credit checks of the tenants or guarantors. The tenant should also pay the deposit and their first rent period in advance before you agree to sign the agreement.

WARNING

You must perform the right to rent checks for everyone over 18 who wants to move into the property. If you don't do this before signing, you could go to jail!

I want to use a guarantor. What do I need to be aware of?

To avoid potentially successful unfair terms challenges, the RLA recommends that a new guarantor form should be provided to the guarantor for their signature prior to every new tenancy. This includes renewing an existing tenancy (or when you expressly agree to extend a tenancy).

You must send an unsigned, but completed, copy of the proposed assured shorthold tenancy agreement alongside the deed of guarantee. You should also allow the proposed guarantor sufficient time to read the document and take legal advice if necessary. This will typically be at least 7 days before the start of the tenancy agreement. Failure to do so will likely make your guarantee unenforceable.

For more information on guarantor obligations and cancellation rights please see the explanatory guide attached to the RLA guarantor forms.

Renting out a property with a Green Deal charge?

Are you entering a Tenancy Agreement with a new tenant for a property for which a Green Deal charge is payable?

If so - the Tenancy Agreement must contain a prescribed form of acknowledgement under which the tenant agrees to pay off the Green Deal charge.

If you fail to comply you may well have to repay the full Green Deal charge at once rather than repaying via a charge on the electricity meter.

Where a new tenant becomes the bill payer, they must be given a copy of the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) giving details of the Green Deal before they view the property or at the first viewing and then sign the required acknowledgement in the Tenancy Agreement itself to say that they agree to pay the ongoing Green Deal charges.

The wording you need to insert is available on the government's website. Alternatively, please contact the RLA Advisors for assistance.

Unsure whether your tenant is over 18?

If there is any uncertainty as to whether the prospective tenant is aged 18 or over you must check. Obtain a copy of their birth certificate/other proof of age. If you let someone under 18 use this agreement it could be much more difficult to obtain possession (e.g. due to rent arrears or because the tenancy has run out, whilst they remain under the age of 18).

Members Only

Login to download this document.

Log into your RLA Account

Join the RLA

Get full access to over 130 Documents and Guides

No Guest Access

This content is available to RLA Members only, not Guests.

Landlord & Investment Show London Olympia 2019
Ideal Flatmate
99 Homes
John Pye Auctions

Help us improve this page - rate how helpful you found it:

Thank you for your feedback. How could we make the page more helpful?

Thank you for your feedback.