Demoted tenancies

The following Local Government practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Demoted tenancies
  • Demotion
  • Conduct
  • Statutory provisions for demotion
  • Reasonableness
  • Procedure for demotion
  • Defences
  • Effect of demotion
  • Length of demotion
  • Obtaining possession of a demoted tenancy
  • More...

Demoted tenancies

Coronavirus (COVID-19): During the current pandemic, legislation and changes to practice and procedure in the courts and tribunals have been introduced, which affect the following:

  1. proceedings for possession

  2. forfeiture of business leases on the grounds of non-payment of rent

  3. a landlord's right to exercise Commercial Rent Arrears Recovery (CRAR) and enforcement agents taking control of goods

  4. service of various notices to recover possession of residential properties

  5. practice and procedure in the First-tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) and Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber)

  6. insolvency legislation of both a permanent and temporary nature

For further information and guidance, see: Coronavirus (COVID-19)—implications for property and Coronavirus (COVID-19)—social housing tracker.


A secure tenancy can be demoted to a 12-month probationary tenancy if the tenant has engaged in housing related anti-social conduct or has used the property for unlawful purposes. If a demotion order is granted and the tenant remains in occupation then on a specified date the secure tenancy will end and a demoted tenancy will begin.

The equivalent powers apply to registered providers of housing for assured tenants under the Housing Act 1988 (HA 1988).


'Housing related anti-social conduct' is conduct which:

  1. is capable of causing nuisance or annoyance to another, and

  2. which directly or indirectly relates to or affects the housing functions of the landlord

Such conduct includes:

  1. causing a nuisance to neighbours

  2. vandalism and graffiti

  3. noise

‘Use of property for unlawful purposes’ is conduct which

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