One of my Assured Shorthold Tenants wants to leave. What can I do?

This is an increasingly common situation. You have two or more tenants living in your property under an Assured Shorthold Tenancy, but one of the tenants wishes to leave before the tenancy expires.

Unfortunately, most standard Assured Shorthold Tenancy agreements do not contain a clause dealing with this situation because of their short-term nature.

Usually, assuming you are happy for one of your tenants to leave – either because the remaining tenant(s) can afford to continue without the outgoing tenant or if you have found a suitable replacement for the outgoing tenant – it is easiest to bring the current tenancy to an end and draw up a new agreement.

Similarly, the tenancy deposit would be best dealt with in the same way. Each Tenancy Deposit Protection Scheme operates slightly differently, but generally speaking they will not allow you to transfer a protected deposit from one set of tenants to another.

Therefore, when bringing the tenancy to an end as above, you should deal with the deposit as if you were bringing the tenancy to an end proper. You would then need to obtain a fresh deposit from the tenants subject to the new agreement and protect it as normal.

If you are a landlord or a tenant under an Assured Shorthold Tenancy and you are looking for legal advice, you can contact our Housing team on 0113 201 4900 for a free, no obligation consultation.

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