Residential tenancies granted to companies
Residential tenancies granted to companies

The following Property Disputes guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Residential tenancies granted to companies
  • Status of tenant company
  • Status of individual occupant

This Practice Note considers the potential status of a residential tenancy granted to a company and the potential status of any individual occupants authorised by that company.

Status of tenant company

Pursuant to section 1 of the Housing Act 1988 (HA 1988), only an individual(s) can hold an assured tenancy (AT) and accordingly, an assured shorthold tenancy (AST). Therefore, a company cannot hold an AST. See: Assured and assured shorthold tenancies—granting.

It is unlikely that a tenant company’s occupation of a residential property would be a business tenancy under Part II of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954 (LTA 1954), unless the tenancy satisfies the criteria in LTA 1954, s 23, ie a tenancy is within the LTA 1954 if the whole or a part of the demised premises are occupied by the tenant for the purposes of their business or for those and other purposes. The expression 'business' includes any trade, profession or employment. It also includes any activity carried on by a body of persons, whether corporate or unincorporate. Therefore, there are three essential conditions for protection under LTA 1954 to apply:

  1. there must be a tenancy. A mere licence does not confer statutory protection