Q&As

Which factors would suggest that the occupation of a residential property is by way of a tenancy rather than a licence?

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Produced in partnership with Kate Andrews of Hamlins
Published on LexisPSL on 21/06/2017

The following Property Disputes Q&A produced in partnership with Kate Andrews of Hamlins provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Which factors would suggest that the occupation of a residential property is by way of a tenancy rather than a licence?
  • Rent
  • Fixed term
  • Exclusive possession
  • Conclusion
  • Eviction

Which factors would suggest that the occupation of a residential property is by way of a tenancy rather than a licence?

Case study

Party A, who owns and resides in a house, enters into a document called a 'licence agreement for lodger' with party B, which allows B to live in a room of the house on the following terms:

  1. payment of 'rent' of £75 per week

  2. B has a key to the room, which she keeps locked

  3. A retains a key to the room and is able to inspect whenever he wishes

  4. A and B share a kitchen and bathroom and other facilities

  5. no length of term is specified

  6. the agreement contains an 'early termination clause' upon the service of four weeks’ notice by either party

A has subsequently vacated the property and now lives with a relative, due to ill health. A further person, C, occupies another room in the house and now shares the kitchen and bathroom with B. B has failed to pay any rent for approximately eight months.

In answering this Q&A, we have assumed:

  1. this scenario relates to residential property

  2. the second licensee has paid rent up to date

  3. each licensee does not have access to the other licensee’s room

  4. the landlord wishes to evict only the licensee who has failed to pay rent

  5. there have been no other breaches by the

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