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When everyone has a home

Housing advice for Northern Ireland

Tenancy agreement

You need to know whether you are going to be a tenant who will be protected in law or a licensee who has very few rights in law. It's important that you understand your legal status in your new home.

In an emergency, you can enter the rented property to secure it or make it safe for others. However, you cannot usually enter the property without the prior consent of your tenants.

Your tenancy agreement can give you additional rights, beyond those afforded to you in legislation. When drawing up a tenancy agreement, remember that any terms which are seen to be unfair are unenforceable.

Your landlord does not have to give you a tenancy agreement. But, it's a good idea to have one of these. It means both you and the landlord know your rights and responsibilities. A tenancy agreement is a legal contract. It is very difficult to get out of a tenancy agreement before its end date. 

Rates are a property tax. The money raised in rates helps to pay for all types of public services. Land & Property Services (LPS) is the agency responsible for collecting rates. Either the tenant or the landlord may have to pay rates in rented properties.

Tenancy agreements are a legal contract. Make sure you read the agreement before you sign it. Here are some issues your tenancy agreement should deal with.

You are not required to serve a Notice to Quit to bring a fixed term agreement to an end, but you should write to your tenants to find out whether they intend to stay in the property or move on. Finding out your existing tenants' intentions will help minimise the risk of void months, where no rent is paid.

Any term in a tenancy agreement has to be fair. 

An unfair term is not enforceable. This means you do not have to stick to it and the landlord cannot use it to take legal action against you. 

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