Different types of tenancies
We offer all applicants new to social housing an Introductory Tenancy. These last for 12 months. During this period tenants have fewer rights, and courts have less discretion in deciding whether the council can evict if there is a breach of tenancy. At the end of the tenancy the council can decide to grant either a secure or a flexible tenancy. If we have concerns about the tenancy we can extend the introductory tenancy for a further six months.
Until recently all other tenancies were Secure Tenancies under Housing Act 1985. The rights and responsibilities of tenants and the council are set out in the Tenancy Agreement. If the council wants to re-possess a property it can only take this action under one of 16 proscribed grounds. The most common being where rent has not been paid or any other obligation of the tenancy has not been met. The council would need to prove the grounds to the County Court's satisfaction, and also show that eviction was a reasonable option.
If you do not occupy the property as your only home you are no longer a Secure Tenant and the process to repossess is simpler.
Flexible tenancies were introduced in the Localism Act 2011. These are fixed term tenancies of 2 or 5 years. Flexible tenancies are being introduced as the normal tenancy offered at the end of an Introductory Tenancy. The main difference is that at the end of the fixed term the council can decide not to offer a new tenancy, or to offer a different property, should the tenant’s income or circumstances have changed.