A tenancy can last for any length of time – as long as the landlord and tenant are in agreement to let the tenancy continue.
Similarly, the length of the term defined in the tenancy agreement can be for any length of time.
A 999-year lease, under historic common law, is an essentially permanent lease of property. How long a lease a tenant would be granted would be the subject of agreement between the landlord and tenant.
These are the defining lengths of the term where matters can change:-
- A lease for a term exceeding three years must be made by deed I.e witnessed.
- A lease for a term exceeding seven years must be registered at HM Land Registry (since 2003).
- Section 11 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985 does not apply to leases for a term exceeding seven years unless the landlord has the right to break during the first seven years . That means any repairing obligations imposed on the tenant in respect of the structure, exterior etc are enforceable.
- The Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 do not apply to leases for a term exceeding seven years unless the landlord has the right to break during the first seven years.
- If there is no landlord’s right to break it is vital to ensure that the lease can be terminated on one of the statutory grounds.
- There needs to be some mechanism for the rent to increase.
- For tenancies over 21 years then different rules apply.
If considering a long lease it is advisable for bothe parties to get appropriate legal advice.
Why a 6-month fixed term is commonly used for assured shorthold tenancies (Jungle Property blog)
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