Converted introductory standard contracts: Rights and responsibilities
- If you had an introductory council tenancy or housing association starter tenancy before 1 December 2022, then your agreement is now a converted introductory standard contract
- These types of contracts are known as ’converted contracts’
- The terms of your introductory or starter tenancy still apply, unless they are incompatible with the ’fundamental terms’ of your converted contract
This page explains your rights if you have a converted introductory standard occupation contract with a community landlord.
If you moved into your home on or after 1 December 2022 the information below does not apply to you. To find the correct information, please visit our Renting section.
Do I have a converted introductory standard occupation contract?
If you had an introductory council tenancy or housing association starter tenancy before 1 December 2022, then your agreement converted to an introductory standard contract on that date. This does not mean your 12-month introductory period started again – the start date remained as the date your original introductory or starter tenancy began.
When will I become a secure contract-holder?
You will become a secure contract-holder automatically after 12 months after the start of your original introductory or starter tenancy, unless your landlord:
- starts action to evict you during the 12-month period, or
- decides to extend your introductory period for a further 6 months.
If you spent time as an introductory or starter tenant in another property immediately before you moved into your current home under the same tenancy, the time you spent there counts towards the 12-month introductory period.
What are the terms of my converted introductory standard contract?
The terms of the renting agreement you had before 1 December 2022 will continue and they are now part of your converted introductory standard contract.
However, the law also introduced fundamental terms and supplementary terms into all converted introductory standard contracts.
To help you work out what the terms of your converted introductory standard contract are, you can follow these 3 rules:
- Fundamental terms are always valid
- The terms of your old agreement are valid except for those that are incompatible with fundamental terms
- Supplementary terms are valid except where they are incompatible with fundamental terms and the terms of your old agreement
Where terms are incompatible this should be noted in the contract.
Will I get a copy of the new contract?
Your landlord must provide you with a written occupation contract by 1 June 2023.
If any supplementary term or terms in your old contract are not valid this should be identified and explained clearly in the contract. For more information see our advice page about written contracts.
If you haven’t already received them, you should also be given:
- a contact address for your landlord
- a copy of the annual gas safety check dated within the last year
- an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) dated within the last 10 years
On 1 December 2023 you should also receive an electrical installation condition report dated within the last 5 years. This test should then be carried out every 5 years.
If your landlord has not provided the above information, they may not be able to evict you using a ‘no fault’ notice. If your landlord has given you an eviction notice get help.
Can my landlord evict me during the introductory period?
Yes. It is usually quite easy for your landlord to evict you under a converted introductory standard contract because they don’t have to prove a legal reason to the court. Your landlord has to follow the right procedure. If they want to evict you they must give you a notice and, once you receive the notice, you will have a right to ask your landlord to review their decision to evict you.
For more information on how you can be evicted and what to do if you get a notice, see here.
What are the rules on rent and rent increases?
Read your contract to see what it says about how the rent should be paid. You must pay the rent that you agreed with your landlord. If you don’t pay your rent your landlord can take court action to evict you.
Your landlord will give you rent statements from time to time, showing how much rent was due and how much rent was paid.
During your introductory period, if your landlord wants to increase your rent, they must give at least 2 months’ notice on a RHW12 form. They can only increase your rent once a year.
Your rent should always be your top financial priority as you could lose your home if you get into rent arrears. If you are claiming benefits or have a low income, you may be able to claim housing benefit or Universal Credit housing costs to help with the rent.
Can I appeal against the rent increase?
If you were an assured shorthold starter tenant with a housing association before 1 December 2022, you may be able to appeal to the Rent Assessment Committee (RAC) if you think your rent has been increased unfairly. You must apply for an appeal before the date that your rent is due to increase.
Can my landlord change my converted introductory standard contract?
The terms of your converted introductory standard contract can only be changed if you and your landlord agree. No changes can be made until you have been given the written occupation contract.
Once you receive the contract your landlord can make changes to:
- some fundamental terms (but only if you agree)
- any supplementary and additional terms (but only if you agree)
If changes are agreed, your landlord should give you a ‘written statement of variation’ within 14 days. They may choose to give you a full written contract in full, including the changed fundamental or supplementary term. If your landlord does not provide either of these, find out what you can do here.
Who is responsible for repairs and conditions?
Your landlord is responsible for ensuring that the property is kept in good repair. This includes dealing with:
- problems with the roof, guttering, windows, doors and brickwork
- plumbing, gas and electricity.
Your landlord should give you information about what repairs you are responsible for, which usually includes internal decoration and putting right any damage you cause.
If your home needs repairs, report the problem to your landlord straight away. They should have a 24-hour service for emergencies and proper procedures for carrying out any work involved.
Your landlord must also ensure that you home is fit to live in. If conditions in your home are very poor, if there is serious damp and mould for example, your home may be classed as unfit to live in.
For your home to be fit to live in, you must also have been given a carbon monoxide detector where appropriate.
Your landlord must also install mains-connected smoke alarms on each floor of your home and carry out an electrical installation condition report (EICR) by 1 December 2023.
You can find out more about repairs if you have a community landord here.
Your right to live in your home without interference
You have the right to live in your home without interference from the landlord or anyone acting on their behalf. If your landlord tries to do this s/he may be guilty of harassment, which is against the law. To find out more about what you can do if your landlord is harassing you, read our advice about harassment and illegal eviction.
Can I take in lodgers?
You don’t normally have the right to take in a lodger or sublet part of your home while you are a converted introductory standard contract-holder. If you do so without written permission from your landlord, they may decide to evict you.
Can I transfer my occupation contract to someone else?
You can’t transfer a converted introductory standard occupation contract (ie pass it on to someone else during your lifetime) unless it’s done as part of a divorce or other family proceedings. You might be able to do so once your occupation contract becomes a secure contract, but only with your landlord’s consent.
Can someone else take over my contract when I die?
As a converted introductory standard occupation contract-holder, there are rules about who the occupation contract can be passed on to. The legal process for passing your contract on when you die is called ‘succession’.
Can I transfer to another community landlord home?
It may be possible to get a transfer to another property owned by a community landlord. Most councils have a waiting list for community landlord contract-holders who want to transfer to another community landlord home. Your local council can give you information about the rules.
You are more likely to be offered a transfer if your home isn’t suitable for you. Even if this is the case, you may have to wait a long time for somewhere suitable.
You could ask your current landlord if they could transfer you to another of their properties. Their policies might allow for this, or they could advise you to apply to the council’s community landlord waiting list.
Can I swap my home?
You probably won’t be able to swap your home with another community landlord contract-holder. Once your introductory period ends and you are given a secure contract, you will be able to swap your home with another secure contract-holder, or possibly another secure or assured tenant in another part of the country.
How can I end a converted introductory standard occupation contract?
If you want to end your converted introductory standard contract and leave your home you should give the landlord the correct notice in writing. The minimum length of notice you should give your landlord is 4 weeks.
What if I have a complaint?
If you feel that a community landlord isn’t treating you fairly or has failed to fulfil its responsibilities, you should use their official complaints procedure. You usually have to do this before you can take things any further.
If you’re not happy with the response you get, you can complain further to the Public Services Ombudsman for Wales.