Here is a question to the blog clinic from Juliet
I am looking at buying a house which is currently owned by the person living in the house, she has told me she is happy to sell the house to me with the following conditions:
1. We agreed a set figure
2. She can live in property until she dies.
3. I cover all repairs costs etc and she covers bills
I have been reading about this and I can’t figure out which is best way to do this, I was considering a protected tenancies, or a sitting tenant.
Please can you advise me on this matter?
To start with a ‘protected tenancy’ means a tenancy protected under the Rent Act 1977 and the ability to create this ended on 15 January 1989. A ‘sitting tenant’ is just a term for someone who is hard to evict, it is not the name of an actual type of tenancy.
From the tenant’s point of view, the best form of tenancy for her would probably be an assured tenancy.
This is very similar to an assured shorthold tenancy but the landlord does not have the right to evict the tenant under section 21.
So with an assured tenancy the tenant has long term security and so it does not matter that (for example) they have a periodic monthly tenancy. You would still be able to evict for rent arrears though.
One of the scandals of the modern age is the practice of companies buying up properties from property owners (usually at less than their full value because the owner is desperate for the money) on the basis that they will be allowed to live there, but giving them assured shorthold tenancies and then evicting them under section 21 a few years later.
So the tenant would need to make sure she got at assured tenancy.
From your point of view, I would suggest that the tenancy agreement specify that the succession rules be excluded, as you don’t really want the tenant getting married to a much younger man and then being stuck with her husband after she dies.
Needless to say, both of you should be represented by solicitors in the transaction to ensure that these things are done properly and that the interests of you both are respected.