The Association has recently written out to all tenants advising them of the Housing (Scotland) Act 2014. As you are aware the Housing (Scotland) Act 2014 introduced changes to help landlords make the best use of their housing stock, whilst at the same time recognising the rights of tenants to pass on their tenancy to others in appropriate circumstances and with the landlord’s consent.
Some parts of the Act require further legislation to be agreed or further guidance from the Scottish Government therefore a timetable for the changes becoming effective has only recently been set.
As previously publicised, the 2014 Act abolished the Right to Buy for all tenants of social housing in Scotland who had a right to buy on 1 August 2016, and the other changes will come into force from May 2019 onwards. All tenants will receive notification in writing of what the changes mean and who to contact with any queries.
Below are some questions which are frequently asked regarding the changes;
Do I require to sign a new tenancy agreement?
There is no requirement for any existing Scottish secure or short Scottish secure tenant to sign a new tenancy agreement. From 1 May 2019 all new tenants will sign a revised tenancy agreement which includes all changes made by the Act.
Which parts of my tenancy agreement have changed?
These are changes;
•if you want to sublet all or part of your house to someone else;
•if you want to assign your tenancy (pass the tenancy on to someone else);
•if you want another person to be included with you as a joint tenant;
•to some of the rules around when certain people can succeed to (take over) a Scottish secure tenancy on the death of the tenant; and
•to the way in which a Scottish secure tenancy can be ended following a conviction for serious antisocial or criminal behaviour.
What do these changes mean for me?
The most significant change is the importance of letting us know who is living in your household. This includes letting us know about anyone who has previously moved in with you who you have not already told us about. We should also be notified when anyone moves into or out of your home in the future.
This is important because any decision about subletting, assignation, joint tenancy or succession will be based on whether yourself and/or the applicant are recorded by the Association as living in the property for a minimum of 12 months.
It is also important to note that a tenancy can now be ended due to a conviction being obtained not only for the tenant or joint tenant, but for any person living in the property due to immoral or illegal purposes, or any offence punishable by imprisonment which was committed either in, or in the locality of the house.
How can I update who is in my household?
There are a number of ways in which you can ensure that your tenancy records are kept up to date.
Firstly by complete the Household Details Form we recently sent or by complete the online Household Details Form on our website.
You can also email our Customer Service Team at firstname.lastname@example.org or you can call in person to our housing offices in Arbroath & Dundee and complete a change of household details form.