Private tenants handbook

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13. Shared accommodation

The most typical scenarios include:

  • A joint tenancy - everyone shares the property and its facilities and no-one has exclusive possession of any part, even though in practice you may agree to occupy a particular bedroom. There is one tenancy agreement for the property which everyone signs.
  • A sole tenancy - everyone in the property has their own tenancy agreement because they each have exclusive possession of one specific room but share the other facilities such as the kitchen.
  • Or one person in the property has a sole tenancy and then sub-let rooms to others as sub-tenants or lodgers.

Your rights and responsibilities will vary depending on whether you have a joint or sole tenancy or whether you are a lodger or sub-tenant. Please see here for further information on:

  • Paying the rent
  • Ending your tenancy
  • Deposits in shared accommodation
  • Paying bills in shared accommodation
  • Paying Council Tax in shared accommodation
  • TV licence

House in Multiple Occupation (HMO)

If you are moving into a property where there are three or more people who share facilities and at least one person isn't related to the others it is likely that you are leaving in a House in Multiple Occupation (HMO). Your landlord may need a licence for a HMO and will have a number of extra legal responsibilities in the management of this type of property.

You can contact the Private Sector Housing team to check if your property has been granted a licence by the council or you have concerns about the condition or maintenance of the property that you are living in. Email or call 01392 277888 and asking for Private Sector Housing.

Further information on these topics and more can be found here: