Please click here to view our Tenants' Handbook. If you would like a copy of the handbook sent to you please contact our Customer Care team on 020 8915 2000. The handbook is also available on audio CD and large print. If you require a language translation of any of our documents please contact us on the above number or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
From the 12th November, Sutton Council and Sutton Housing Partnership will be bringing in introductory tenancies. The result will mean we are able to deal more effectively with problems of
anti-social behavior and circumstances where new tenants seriously breach their tenancy agreement. Please find below a few 'Frequently Asked Questions and Answers' that will provide you with some more information.
Q1: What is an Introductory Tenancy?
An Introductory tenancy lasts for 12 months. If there are no problems during this time, the tenancy will automatically become a secure tenancy.
Where the tenancy agreement is broken (for example the weekly rent is not paid or the tenant or their visitors cause a nuisance to neighbours), the Council can either extend the Introductory Tenancy for a further 6 months or start proceedings to repossess the property. Introductory Tenancies allow landlords to operate fast-track possession proceedings in the first year of the tenancy for new tenants whose conduct is unsatisfactory. Eviction will be a last resort and, introductory tenants will be offered support to improve their behaviour.
Introductory Tenancies do not come to an end without a court order for possession. The tenant must be served with a termination notice saying that the court will be asked to make an order for possession and state the reasons for the action. The tenant has the right to a review of the decision by Sutton Housing Partnership before the case goes to court.
Q2: Why are we making this change?
One of the main benefits of Introductory Tenancies is that the close monitoring of the tenancy in the first 12 months will help housing managers to quickly identify and take appropriate action where a tenant’s behaviour becomes unacceptable or where a vulnerable household is in need of support. The scheme should benefit the new tenant by sending out a clear message at the start of the tenancy about the consequences of breaches of their tenancy conditions. Existing tenants will also benefit, as housing managers will be able to deal more quickly with complaints of new tenants who behave in an anti-social manner.
Q3: I am currently in temporary accommodation/a temporary tenant will I be affected by the change?
Yes, if you are offered a permanent tenancy with the London Borough of Sutton in the future it will be an introductory tenancy.
Q4: I am currently an assured tenant with a Housing Association. If I transfer to a Council tenancy or carry out a mutual exchange with a Council tenant will I be affected?
No, you will become a secure Council tenant not an introductory tenant.
Q5: I am a secure Council tenant. If I transfer to another property, carry out a mutual exchange, assignment or succession, will I be affected?
No, in all of these circumstances your tenancy will remain a secure tenancy.
Q6: What rights will an Introductory tenant have?
Introductory tenants will have the majority of rights held by secure tenants including rights of succession, assignment, repair and consultation. They will not have rights to take in lodgers, sub-let part of their property, improve their property, exchange or buy their property. For the Right to Buy, while introductory tenants do not have this right during the trial period, this period will count towards a Right to Buy discount if the tenancy becomes a secure tenancy.
Q7: What responsibilities will an Introductory tenant have?
Responsibilities are the same as for secure tenants in that they will have to keep to their Tenancy Conditions. These conditions will be given at the start of the tenancy. Your Neighbourhood Manager will carry out a settling-in visit 6 weeks after you move in and again after 9 months to check that you have settled into your new home and that you are following your conditions of tenancy and to discuss any problems.
Q8: What will happen if the terms of the Introductory tenancy are broken?
Introductory tenants will be made aware from the outset that once a complaint has been made against them or a problem with their tenancy has been identified, Sutton Housing Partnership will engage and work with them in order to try and resolve the issue. Eviction will continue to be pursued as a last resort and only after appropriate support has been offered to the introductory tenant to improve their behaviour.
Q9: What advice would you give to Introductory tenants?
Introductory tenants have nothing to fear as long as they, their family and/or visitors to their home behave responsibly. If they abide fully with the Tenancy Conditions they should have no reason to be concerned. As long as there are no problems associated with the tenancy during the first year, the tenancy will automatically become a secure tenancy on the first anniversary of the date the tenancy started.
If you have any further questions, then please contact us on 020 8915 2000. Or you can also speak to your Neighbourhood Manager at your tenancy sign up. If you would like a copy of our Tenancy Conditions for Secure Tenancies or Introductory Tenancies, please call click here.