Here is a blog clinic question from Sally (not her real name) who is (or wants to be) a tenant
I was a tenant of a property for 2 years, I then moved back to the property I owned a year ago as there were implications on my mortgage if I did not. I gave notice to the landlord which was never acknowledged by the landlord.
The property has remained empty ever since and I realise what a mistake I made and wish to move back.
The owner is now in a care home with mental problems, she has said I can move back in whenever I want but I am concerned that the care services will try to sell the property whilst I am there or whether my tenancy agreement will still be valid now?
Really need help with what I can do?
If you move into the property and start paying rent, then a new tenancy will be created automatically (under s 54(2) of the Law of Property Act 1925).
You don’t need a tenancy agreement to create a tenancy. If is a good idea and good practice but it is not actually necessary.
If you have reached an oral agreement with the landlord that should be sufficient. Keep a record of the date you agreed and make sure you pay rent.
The only problem I can see is that it may be alleged that the landlord did not have mental capacity to create a tenancy – however even if this was the case (and I don’t think it is) they would still have to follow the proper procedures to get you out.
If the care people then want to sell the property with vacant possession they will have to follow the proper procedures to evict you first or sell it with you as a sitting tenant.