We are all thinking about the new Welsh tenancy agreements – but we must stop that. There is a whole new terminology:
- Tenancies and licenses must now be known as ‘occupation contracts’
- The actual agreement documents are now ‘written statements’
- Tenants (or licensees) are to be known as ‘contract holders’, and
- Clauses in the agreement are called ‘terms’.
The only thing that remains the same is ‘landlord’. Which will annoy most landlords as apparently they don’t want to be called landlords anymore. Apparently, they feel the term is outdated and also tainted. After prolonged (and to be fair, largely unjustified) vilification in the press.
Still, the Welsh Assembly have obviously not got the message so they will remain as landlords in Wales.
Terms and numbering
In my last post, I said I was going to change the numbering of the agreement. However, I have now changed my mind on this. (I’m allowed to do this being a woman).
I am still unhappy about the way the model agreements are numbered, but it looks as if the numbering is organised by the ‘terms’ (of which there are 52 in the fixed term agreement I am working on just now) and I suppose it would be best to leave them as they are.
Particularly as there appears to be an excessive amount of cross-referencing in the document (both to its own clauses and to clauses in the Renting Homes (Wales) Act 2016, which I suspect most contract holders won’t want to know about) which will be a nightmare to replace.
I try to avoid cross-referencing like the plague in my drafting but it is scattered like confetti through the model agreements. The draftspeople seem to have felt it necessary to justify practically every point by reference to something or other. However, just for fun, I am carrying on this tradition in my additional clauses.
I am though, doing a few tweaks which I hope will make the document more user-friendly, but it is not going to be a happy document for most Welsh contract holders. Or indeed for their landlords.
Cross-referencing is not good for readability. I now have three monitors, but it’s still not enough.
How about you?
Is anyone else doing work on the new Welsh agreements?
If so I would love to hear from you. Just leave a message in the comments below. We can then suffer together.