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How interested are landlords in the composition of your household?

eg If I rent a 2 bed house, I don't want to tell the landlord who might or might not be sleeping in the 2nd bedroom.

Do they ask this sort of thing? Do they try and put it in the contract?

thanks.

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How interested are landlords in the composition of your household?

eg If I rent a 2 bed house, I don't want to tell the landlord who might or might not be sleeping in the 2nd bedroom.

Do they ask this sort of thing? Do they try and put it in the contract?

thanks.

When they show you round they'll ask a few questions so they can assess what you're like and who will be living there to gauge how good or bad a tenant you'll be. If you move in on your own and then have somebody else stay that won't be their concern unless there's a problem being caused, it's courtesy to mention it when you speak to them as they'll need to arrange repairs so won't want to disturb either of you.

I've never heard of it going int the contract other than as a prohibition on sub-letting.

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How interested are landlords in the composition of your household?

eg If I rent a 2 bed house, I don't want to tell the landlord who might or might not be sleeping in the 2nd bedroom.

Do they ask this sort of thing? Do they try and put it in the contract?

thanks.

I have heard of LLs stipulating a maximum number, e.g. a max of two couples in a two bed. This is presumably to ensure no subletting to e.g. four in a room.

I have also heard of agents saying they make a point of checking on regular inspections to see that the max is not exceeded. One told a daughter that it was necessary because illicit subletting on a large scale was common in the area.

Edited by Mrs Bear

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Various things may be put in a tenancy agreement. The starting point is that if there are no restrictions then the tenant is free to have whom he likes in the property. Any one or more of the following may be imposed:

1. A prohibition against sub-letting. That is pretty clear.

2. A prohibition against against taking in lodgers or paying guests. Also clear if it is a case of advertising for a lodger. Not quite so clear if you have someone who only contributes to expenses.

3. A prohibition against sharing occupation. That covers 2 but is wider. It is not likely to exclude occasional guests, but may exclude long term visitors. It is not likely to exclude anyone living with the tenant as part of his family in the narrow sense of that word, but once it gets to wider family and friends it starts to get into a grey area.

4. More specific than 3 are prohibitions or requirements such as:

(i) To use the property as a single dwelling in the occupation of the tenant only

(ii) To use the property as a single dwelling in the occupation of the tenant and his family

(iii) Not allow more than [a specified number of] persons to occupy the property

(iv) Not to allow overcrowding

(v) Not to allow occupation for the purpose of a holiday

In the wonderful world of BTL you never know what you may come up against.

Every provision is subject to interpretation and the same words may be interpreted differently according to the context. What is reasonable for a studio flat may be wholly unreasonable for a five bedroomed detached house. Further, anyone letting a leasehold property is more or less obliged at the very least to impose on a short term tenant the obligations imposed on him by his long lease.

The only way to avoid difficulty is to make sure that the tenancy agreement clearly allows you to do what you want to do. Before handing over any money or getting involved in negotiations ask to see a draft of the tenancy agreement that will be used. If it does not meet your requirements insist that changes must be made to the tenancy agreement. Do not be fobbed off with assurances that there will be no problem or even a side letter giving consent. If in doubt as to whether the wording prevents you from doing what you want to do then go into a forum such as this and ask. If sight of a draft tenancy agreement is denied walk away.

Edited by Damocles

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I take a pragmatic approach in all my dealings with them, its none of their business as far as Im concerned, whether its in the tenancy agreement or not. I do the minimum required and tell them the minimum required to get what I want from them, and I assume that if their is anything that technically I am in breach of

1, they likely dont know whats in their own tenancy agreements

2, they likely will never find out whatever it is youre doing that technically you ought not to be doing

3, if it is in their agreement and they know its in their agreement and they discover you are technically in breach by then youre in the property and what are they going to do exactly, phone the landlord to tell them their tenant checking they charged them a fortune for didnt uncover it since it consisted entirely of tracy in the office filing her nails?

4, the landlord likely hasnt read the agreement either and if they did they probably didnt understand it

5, no-one cares so long as the rent gets paid and the property is made good at the end of the tenancy

So, don't think so much, no-one else is.

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The problem is that in certain circumstances, it is the landlord's business.

The LL's insurance may specify certain restrictions on the type or number of occupiers. A number of insurance policies (contents, buildings and public liability) may specify certain restrictions (e.g. no asylum seekers), etc.

Similar restrictions may be in place by the mortgagee.

In the above cases, if the LL had specified conditions in the AST, then breaching them puts him at risk of substantial financial loss.

There are also legal obligations on the landlord. A property inhabited by 3 or more persons (not direct relatives) is, by definition, an HMO (at least in some regions). As an HMO has specific restrictions on building standards, and may need licensing. Not knowing that the property is an HMO is not a defence, if the council decide to prosecute (e.g. after investigations by complaints from neighbours). The LL is expected to know and ensure that a violation does not occur.

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if the LL had specified conditions in the AST, then breaching them puts him at risk of substantial financial loss.

Yeah I guess. But its not my problem, its part of the risk they take when they get into this dreadful 'business'.

I doubt some terms in a tenancy agreement will stop the real problems they're going to get themselves into in any case, tenants from hell aren't likely to warn them beforehand so if they pry it won't do them any good, it just irritates the good tenants.

Pragmatically speaking, these terms aren't worth much. Letting agents don't do their jobs, landlords are ignorant, I doubt the wrong type of sharers are reported much, insurance is sometimes taken out and even more rarely actually claimed on, etc.

Certainly as far as I have been concerned in any tenancy I skim read the agreements, laugh at the least enforceable clauses, laugh harder at the teenager in the lettings office as they struggle to do a photocopy, rent is paid, I leave it in the same state, they try and steal some money, they fail, I move on to the next. Big whoop. If it all goes wrong for the landlord I couldn't give a tiny rats ass.

:D

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