Changes afoot - should tenants be able to sub-let?

Rules on sub-letting in the Private Rented Sector (PRS) are clear – as a landlord you can simply refuse your tenant permission to sub-let. Most residential landords have a clause written into their rental agreement to this effect. An important reason for this is that if you allow your tenant to sub-let you lose control over who is living in your premises.

"The two main types of sub-letting are: the ‘rent to rent’ where a landlord leases a property to a tenant for a fixed period and they then let the property out to tenants of their own choosing. The rental income covers their own rent to you, the landlord, and also gives them some profit. The benefit to the landlord is a guaranteed rent every month and no management worries. The second type of sub-letting is where your tenant lives in the property but has the right to sub-let one or more rooms," says Michelle Hayter, Dispute Resolution Partner.

There were proposals in the summer budget to make it illegal for a Private Rented Sector tenancy agreement to contain clauses that prohibit sub-letting. You would still have the right to refuse permission but would have to supply reasons why. There would also be a limited time period in which to respond to a request from your tenant to sub-let. The Department of Communities and Local Government (DCLG) have said that they will carry out consultations before making any changes to the current law and the concerns of agents, landlords and others within the PRS will be taken into account.

Our Dispute Resolution team based in Christchurch also cover Bournemouth, Poole and the New Forest. For a free initial chat, please call 01202 499255 and Michelle or a member of the team will be happy to discuss any questions that you may have.