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Lifetime Council Tenancies to be Phased Out

December 11, 2015

An amendment to the forthcoming Housing and Planning Bill will remove the right to life long secure tenancies for new council tenants. The new scheme tabled by the government, is aimed at imposing a five year limit on new tenancies while ending the ability for tenants to pass on the right to live in a property to their next of Kin.

Housing minister, Brandon Lewis said in an explanatory note to the bill; “A secure tenant can currently live in a property for life. This amendment phases out lifetime tenancies. Towards the end of the term, the landlord will have to do a review to decide whether to grant a new tenancy or recover possession.”

Tenants with existing local authority contracts will be unaffected, but children who inherit a tenancy after the death of their parents will automatically be moved on to the new scheme. The change will not affect housing associations who are already under pressure to offer homes for sale under the extension of the right to buy scheme.

Councils and housing association have voiced concerns over the possible effect on income streams brought about by the change, which may limit their ability to build new homes. Where tenancies are removed, local authorities will be under an obligation to provide advice and support on home ownership and other housing options.