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Short assured tenancies

A short assured tenancy is a type of assured tenancy that only gives the tenant full security of tenure for a limited period of time. After this limited period, the landlord can seek repossession without relying on any of the grounds that would have to be fulfilled for repossession to be granted under a normal assured tenancy.

From 1st December 2017 no new short assured tenancies can be created. Tenants whose short assured assured tenancy started before this date will continue to be short assured tenants until such time as the tenancy is ended or if they agree in writing with their landlord to convert to a private residential tenancy. Where there is any doubt please see the section Short assured or private residential tenancy.

Most other rules that relate to assured tenancies apply equally to short assured tenancies. Accordingly, the rules that apply to assured tenancies relating to assignation, succession, the landlord's obligation to provide a written lease, and recovery of possession also apply to short assured tenancies - see the section on assured tenancies for more information.

What is a short assured tenancy

The Housing (Scotland) Act 1988 provides the definition of a short assured tenancy. 

Creating a short assured tenancy

A short assured tenancy can only be created if the correct procedures are followed. 

Changing to a short assured tenancy

This section looks at how other tenancy types may or may not have been changed to short assured tenancies. This section should only be used where the change occurred prior to 1st December 2017. 

Tenancies that cannot be short assured

There are specific categories of tenancy that cannot be short assured. 

Landlord ends the tenancy

The special feature of the short assured tenancy is the landlord's guaranteed ability to recover possession at the expiry of the lease contract. 

S.33 special possession ground

The courts are bound to grant decree for recovery of possession of a property let on a short assured tenancy where the landlord seeks recovery under section 33 of the 1988 Housing (Scotland) Act. 

Tenant wants to leave

The position of a short assured tenant who wishes to leave the accommodation before the end of the tenancy depends upon the tenancy's status at that point. 


Assignation is the legal process whereby one tenant passes the tenancy onto another. 


Succession is the legal process whereby property is passed automatically by law from one person to another on the death of the first person. 

Tenancy term has ended

A tenant may continue to occupy a property beyond the end of the contractual term. 

PRT or short assured tenancy

This section looks at situations where the short assured tenancy has reached the end of the original fixed term and gives details of whether the tenancy continues or a new private residential tenancy is created. 

This content applies to Scotland

Last updated: 30 January 2018