Rental agreement

Licence to rent a room
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Use this rental agreement to rent a room in your home to one or more people. This agreement creates a licence to use the property, with far fewer legal requirements for the landlord than a lease or a tenancy agreement.
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  • Length:6 pages (1000 words)
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About this rental agreement

This document grants permission to one or more people to occupy a room in your home under the terms agreed.

There is no requirement to have a formal written legal agreement with your renter, but having one clarifies what the renter can expect in the arrangement, and provides a reference point should any dispute occur in the future.

Whether you’re renting a room to a friend for a month or two, or wanting a long term lodger, there are practical and legal advantages of having the rental terms in writing.

The law relating to this document

In legal terminology, this document is called "a licence to occupy" and gives a renter permission to live in a property without creating a tenancy.

If you are taking a renter in as a flat or house mate, this is the document you should use. We recommend granting a licence on a short-term basis (less than 12 months) and renewing it when it expires.

When to use this licence

This rental agreement would most commonly be used in the following circumstances:

  • A property owner renting out a spare bedroom (to a stranger, a friend, or a couple)
  • A student owner landlord renting spare rooms in a property to other students

It is suitable for any type of property: flats or houses, and can be used to let more than one room in the same property. You can reuse it for subsequent renters.

You can also use this agreement to sub-let a room if you rent under a tenancy agreement (subject to your tenancy agreement allowing sub-letting) and subject to someone on the original tenancy agreement still living at the address.

The document is not suitable if:

  • The renter will run a business from the property
  • The renter will occupy the whole property and the landlord lives elsewhere

Some helpful and practical pointers for rental agreements

Mentioned in the help notes to this document (along with others) are the following pointers:

  • Taking a deposit  can be done (and is covered in this agreement) but we advise that if you can avoid doing so, you should. A court may see a deposit as pointing toward this arrangement being a tenancy.
  • Work in to your agreement the right for you to enter the room rented to your renter at any time. Although this needs to be done discretely, avoiding giving the renter exclusive occupation of the property helps identify your arrangement as a licence rather than a tenancy.
  • Living with a renter can be less pleasant once you’ve given him or her notice. Consider a short term. The expectation of a short arrangement will make giving notice easier (e.g. you can mention that you don’t plan to renew, rather than that you want your renter to leave).

Agreement features and contents

  • Includes sensible, practical provisions to protect the landlord’s interests
  • Full description of the property and the services that the renter should expect to receive
  • All likely provisions for restrictions on what the renter may do in the property
  • Rent period and amount
Reviews of this document
4.8 out of 5 stars
4 Reviews
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Recent reviews
Linsy Rotar
15 August 2022
This template was so helpful and thorough! I got me started and I was able to modify it to my own circumstances. Thank you for making this available.
Erik Atchison
22 May 2020
I could not find any other online source for this particular document. It was specifically written for my geographic location and requirements.

I had no idea how to thoroughly and properly write any document such as this. I have had problem tenants before, that will certainly happen. That is Ok if I am prepared and can deal with them swiftly.

My biggest concern was that due to the nature of this purchase, I could not fully 'see' what I was actually getting. I mean, who doesn't want to see what they are buying before spending their money? Fortunately, my concerns were unfounded.

I rated it 5 Stars because it was explained very well how to use it. The language is 'simple' for those who are not overly familiar with legal matters. The biggest benefit to me is peace of mind as I will have started the tenancy correctly now. What starts good generally stays good.

I can certainly recommend this particular document. I have not yet purchased any other documents from Net Lawman. But this is an indication of the quality that can be expected.
Nerin Carr
12 February 2016
This document provides a valuable template for a very common living situation that is largely under-represented: the home owner taking in a roommate. Not only is your website exceptional for acknowledging the difference between the tenancy act and the innkeeper act, you actually provide a document tailored for it! Just visiting this website is invaluable. The document is wonderful and sold at a very reasonable price. Very easy to use with really user friendly wording and helpful suggestions. Thank you very much. Would you consider creating a lodger application form?
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