What are the rules in my tenancy agreement?

What are the rules in my tenancy agreement?

A picture of a tenancy agreement next to a red pen

If you have a tenancy agreement you should read it to see what rules you must follow, and what rules your landlord must follow.

A drawing of the tenants handbook showing a purple tick under the title Tenants Handbook Rules

You might also be given a Tenants Handbook, which has more rules in it, which you must follow.

A man sitting on a chair scratching his head looking confused when reading a book

Not everybody needs a written tenancy agreement. 

If you are paying rent you might be a tenant.

If you don't know, or are unsure about your tenancy, contact the Learning Disability Helpline for advice. 

A man explaining words on a sheet of paper to another man

If you do not understand any of the rules, ask your landlord to explain them to you.

If you think anything in your tenancy agreement is not fair, contact the Learning Disability Helpline for advice. 

A calendar showing when to pay money

Usually, you must:

1. Pay all of your rent on time

A man sitting in his home

2. Live in your home

A woman vacuuming

3. Try to keep your home clean

A woman making a telephone call in her kitchen which has a broken window

4. Let your landlord know if anything needs repairing

A lawnmower on grass

5. Try to keep your garden clean

Someone locking a window and someone else locking a door

6. Make sure that your doors are locked, and your windows are shut when you are not in your home

A bin waiting to be picked up by the dustmen

7. Put your bins out to be emptied

A man in an open doorway asking a tradesman for proof of his identity

8. Let people in to fix the property, but ask to see some proof to check that they are who they say they are

A man with his hands over his ears because someone is making too much noise

You must not:

1. Make a lot of noise

A woman outside her house holding up a council tax bill which is overdue

2. Forget to pay your rent or council tax

A red cross over a picture of a hand about to touch the electricity meter

3. Change the meters without your landlord's permission

Pets including a hamster, goldfish, dog and cat with a red cross over them

4. Have pets in the property without your landlord's permission

A hole in a plaster wall with a red cross over it

5. Make holes in the walls

A photo of two hands repairing electricity cables in a wall with a red cross over it

6. Try to repair the gas or electricity supplies or appliances

Two people outside their house bullying a woman outside her house

7. Bully your neighbours

A man in handcuffs being walked by a police man

9. Break the law in your neighbourhood

A couple walking through a subway seeing someone they know hurting someone else. The person they  know who is committing the crime has a red cross over them.

10. Let anyone who breaks the law in the neighbourhood visit your home or live with you

A red cross over a picture of two people moving out as they haven't told their landlord

11. Move out without telling your landlord

A woman giving another woman the freedom to go through a door in peace

Your landlord must:

1. Let you live in your home in peace – this means they cannot just turn up and expect to be let in, they must inform you that they will be visiting, or that someone else will be visiting to do repairs.

a repair man working on the electrics in a wall

2. Keep your home in good repair

Money kept safe in a jar

3. Protect your deposit 

A deposit is the money which you paid before you  moved into your home.

A piece of paper with a woman's name and phone number on it

4. Give you their contact details

A man turning a key in a door

Your landlord must not:

1. Let themselves into your home

A man turning a key in a door lock to let himself and other people in. This photograph has a red cross in front of it

2. Let other people into your home unless it is an emergency.

A woman harassing a man with her finger raised towards his face

3. Bully or harass you

A man waving off two women who are moving out of a house

4. Expect you to leave without taking the correct steps

A man telling someone to do something else instead of paying their rent

5. Ask you to do other things instead of paying rent

Three piles of pound notes, each one more than the last. This picture has a red cross over it.

6. Increase your rent without taking the correct steps

A woman on the phone to a call centre handler asking for advice

If you need further advice:

You can telephone the Learning Disability Helpline on 0808 808 1111

An email in an envelope

You can email the Learning Disability Helpline on Helpline@mencap.org.uk