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Security of tenure

This section looks at the different tenancy types and occupation status that someone may have and what impact this will have on her/his security of tenure. It also looks at leases and the ways in which a tenancy can transfer from one person to another.

This content applies to Scotland

Last updated: 29 December 2014

  • Introduction to security of tenure

    This section looks at legal background to tenancies and discusses the different types of occupation.

  • Types of tenure

    In terms of residential accommodation, a tenancy is only one of several kinds of occupation.

  • Tenancy checker

    Tenancy checker - Shelter Legal Scotland

  • Essentials of leases

    This section looks at the general conditions applying to leases. It discusses the difference between tenant and non-tenant occupiers; describes what constitutes a lease; examines the concept of tacit relocation and defines the different types of law that govern a tenancy. It also discusses unfair terms in a lease, and examines the situation where there is a change of landlord.

  • Eviction

    Procedures that must be followed during possession proceedings relating to tenancies and other occupancies of residential premises. Information specific to rent arrears as well as public law, human rights and disability discrimination defences. There is also information on section 11 duties.

  • Private residential tenancies

    Most new private rented sector tenancies created on or after 1st December 2017 will be private residential tenancies. The most significant change is that private residential tenancies have no fixed duration and can only be ended, either by the tenant giving notice, or where the landlord can prove one of 18 grounds.

  • Assured tenancies

    This section discusses assured tenancies. These were created by the Housing (Scotland) Act 1988 and, from 30 September 2002, will only exist in the private rented sector.

  • Short assured tenancies

    Short assured tenancies are an inferior type of assured tenancy that only give the tenant full security of tenure for a limited period of time.

  • Scottish secure tenancies

    This section deals with the law concerning the Scottish secure tenancy. It looks at the definition of a Scottish secure tenancy, how this can be brought to an end, abandonment procedures and other rights of a Scottish secure tenant.

  • Short Scottish secure tenancies

    This section deals with the law concerning the short Scottish secure tenancy. It looks at the definition of a short Scottish secure tenancy and how this can be created. It also looks at how it can be converted to a full Scottish secure tenancy and how a landlord can bring the short Scottish secure tenancy to an end.

  • Common law tenants and non-tenant occupiers

    Common law is law derived from legal principles and judicial precedents.

  • Student Accommodation

    This section looks at issues in relation to 'student lettings'. In particular it explains the rights of tenants in student lettings to give notice as a result of emergency provisions brought in during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

  • Tied accommodation

    This section looks at the rights of employees who live in accommodation provided by their employer.

  • Agricultural tenancies

    This section looks at the rights of tenants who rent agricultural land or an agricultural holding and have an agricultural tenancy. There are four main kinds of agricultural tenancy: 1991 Act tenancies, limited duration tenancies short limited duration tenancies and grazing lets.

  • Assignation

    This section looks at tenants' rights to pass on (assign) their public and private sector tenancies. The way in which a tenancy is assigned will depend on what type of tenancy it is.

  • Succession

    This section looks at succession. Succession is the transfer of the tenant's right in a property to another person when the tenant dies. The section will look at the rules for each type of tenancy.

  • Subletting

    This section looks at the security of tenure of subtenants and at their position when the immediate landlord's lease comes to an end. The section covers both private and public sector subtenancies.

  • Houses in multiple occupation and shared accommodation problems

    This section looks at the Scottish legislation and issues associated with houses in multiple occupation (HMOs). It also considers some common problems where tenants share accommodation or have joint tenancies.

  • Tenants of mortgage borrowers

    This section deals with the situation where tenants of private landlords find their security threatened because the landlord has defaulted on mortgage payments to a lender.

  • Mobile homes and caravans

    This section looks at the rights of people who live in caravans or mobile homes. Both terms are used interchangeably in this section. Rights depend on whether the caravan is classed as a mobile home, whether it is stationed on a protected site, and whether it belongs to an owner-occupier or is rented.

  • Gypsy and Traveller communities

    This section looks at the law relating to Gypsies/Travellers. 'Gypsies/Travellers' is used in this section to include all people who follow, or attempt to follow, a travelling or nomadic lifestyle.

  • Private landlord registration

    Owners of private rented accommodation in Scotland must register with their local authority. They will only be permitted to do so if their local authority is satisfied that they are fit and proper persons to let property.

  • Regulated tenancies

    This section explains how regulated tenancies can be created and how they can be brought to an end, and the basic rights of a regulated tenant.

  • Part VII contracts

    This section looks at Part VII of the Rent (Scotland) Act 1984. This gave limited security of tenure to certain residential occupiers who did not qualify for the fuller security of tenure of the regulated (protected) tenant, and gave a degree of rent control to the tenant.