Tenancy Types

Understanding Different Types of Tenancy Agreements in the UK

When renting a property in the United Kingdom, it's crucial to be aware of the various types of tenancy agreements. These agreements define the terms and conditions of your rental arrangement, so understanding them is essential. Below, we'll explore the most common types of tenancy agreements in the UK:

Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST)

The Assured Shorthold Tenancy is the most common form of tenancy agreement in the UK. Key features include:

- Typically lasts for at least six months.
- The landlord can regain possession of the property after giving a two-month notice to the tenant.
- Tenants have certain rights and protections under this agreement.

Fixed-Term Tenancy

A Fixed-Term Tenancy is a specific type of AST with a predetermined duration, often lasting for six or 12 months. The advantage for tenants is that the rent remains fixed during the term, offering stability.

Periodic Tenancy

A Periodic Tenancy is an ongoing agreement with no fixed end date. It usually rolls on a monthly or weekly basis. Both tenants and landlords have the flexibility to end the tenancy with proper notice, usually one month.

Renting as a Student

Student tenancies are often structured differently to accommodate the academic calendar. These tenancies are typically fixed-term and align with the academic year.

Company Lets

Company lets involve renting a property through a limited company rather than an individual. These arrangements can be more complex and are often used for corporate housing.

Renting a Room

If you're renting a room within a shared house, you might have a "Room Only" agreement. This grants you a room but might not include access to the entire property. Housemates share common areas like the kitchen and bathroom.

Assured Tenancy

Assured Tenancies provide tenants with more security than ASTs. They are less common but still grant substantial tenant rights and protection. The landlord can only regain possession under specific circumstances.

Regulated Tenancy

Regulated Tenancies are rare, and many existing agreements have been in place for several decades. They provide significant security for tenants and can limit rent increases.

Non-Assured Tenancy

Non-assured tenancies are less common and offer more flexibility for landlords to set terms and conditions. These are not subject to the same protections as ASTs.


Some rental arrangements are not covered by traditional tenancy agreements. A license may be used when the occupant does not have exclusive possession of the property, such as in lodger agreements or in cases where the property is not a typical residence.

It's important to understand the specific terms and conditions of your tenancy agreement. Be sure to read and seek advice if you have any questions. Additionally, any deposit you pay should be held in a government-approved deposit protection scheme.

Remember, the type of tenancy agreement you have can significantly impact your rights and responsibilities as a tenant. Always seek professional advice and read your agreement carefully before signing.