Your Rights and Responsibilities

This page has a summary of your main rights and responsibilities while you live in your home. There are more details in your tenancy agreement and your Tenants’ Handbook.

If in doubt, you should always refer to your tenancy agreement for the exact terms that apply to you.

Joint tenants

If two or more people sign your tenancy agreement, you are all individually responsible for paying the rent and meeting the other terms and conditions.

Paying your rent and service charge

You must pay your rent and service charge on time and in full.

We set your rent using a Government formula. We will always give you at least four weeks’ notice in writing before changing your rent and service charges.

Taking care of your home

We expect you to look after your home, carry out minor repairs and decorate regularly. Find out who is responsible for repairs.

The right to repair

If you are an assured tenant, you have the right to make certain urgent repairs if we fail to meet a set timescale. This is a complicated piece of law, so you would need to call the office first, to find out more.

Running a business

You must not run any kind of business from your home without getting our permission first. Your business might also affect your council tax and our buildings insurance.

Owning a pet

Allowing a tenant to keep a pet is at our discretion as there is no statutory right to keep pets. We want to ensure that when allowing residents to keep pets this is not adversely affecting others, for example by causing a nuisance. We will ensure that cruelty or neglect are dealt with quickly and effectively and outline in which circumstances we may withdraw this permission. Please refer to our Pets Policy for more information : Pets Policy.pdf

The right to improve

If you are an assured tenant and you would like to make improvements to your home, you must ask our permission first. You must not start work without it. This includes installing a satellite dish or cable TV.

We will not refuse permission without giving you a good reason. But you will have to agree to get good quality work done that doesn’t interfere with your neighbours or damage the property. You must also get any planning or other permissions you need from the council.

If you go ahead with improvements without permission, we may require you to put things back the way they were, or bill you for carrying out the work ourselves.

The right to make a mutual exchange

If you live in our general needs housing, you have the right to exchange homes with the tenant of any social housing landlord, providing you get our permission first.

Staying away from home

If you need to be away from your home for more than a month, you must contact us with full details. If you have a good enough reason, we can agree to this. However, you will need to pay your rent while you’re away.

Lodgers and sub-letting

As an assured tenant in general needs housing, you have the right to take in a lodger. You need to get our permission first and you must not overcrowd your home.

It is illegal to move out and sub-let the whole of your home. If you do this, you are committing social housing fraud. We will take back your tenancy and you could be fined or even sent to prison.

Succession rights

If an assured tenant dies, their tenancy goes firstly to any remaining joint tenants.

In certain circumstances, their home can also pass to someone else. You can succeed to a tenancy if you were the tenant’s spouse, civil or live-in partner, providing you were living there when the tenant died. Write to us if you think this applies.

We might also pass on a home to a family member who had been living there for more than a year before the tenant died. You would need to write to us, explaining your situation.

However, there are no succession rights if the original tenant was a successor already. This is because a tenancy can only be inherited once. Different rules also apply to homes that would end up under-occupied.


You can’t sign over your tenancy to someone else, unless:

  • it’s because you are making a mutual exchange, or [Link to Living in your home/Your rehousing options]
  • a court orders this as part of a divorce or separation settlement.

In all of these cases, you must contact us first, to get our written permission. We will not withhold this unreasonably.

Anti-social behaviour

We expect you to live in your home peacefully and be a good neighbour. You must also take responsibility for all your household members and any visitors to your home.

We ask you to:

  • avoid confrontation
  • keep noise to a minimum, especially at night and early in the morning
  • warn your neighbours before holding an occasional party
  • not dump rubbish on your estate, and
  • take full responsibility for your children.

Above all, we do not put up with people being harassed or discriminated against for any reason.

We may be able to help if you are the victim of anti-social behaviour.

Domestic violence

We will not put up with residents who are violent or abusive to members of their household. This includes verbal and mental abuse, as well as physical violence and threats.

If you need help with domestic violence, please look through our domestic violence policy.