Hi everyone. I’ve been a landlord for many years without any issues, but I’m currently in a slightly unusual situation and would welcome some advice. Sorry in advance for the slightly long message.
New tenants (a couple on a joint contract) moved into my property very recently. Both have good jobs and seem very nice and polite. I was happy to take them on as tenants.
One off the tenants has just contacted me to let me know they have a serious medical condition and will require brain surgery in a few weeks time. I was very sympathetic as we discussed this. Hopefully they’ll be ok.
However, at the very end of the discussion, the tenant threw in the news that they were also breaking up with their partner (the other joint tenant). It’s a bit odd because they only moved in one month ago. The tenant explained that the plan was for their partner to leave, and for their foreign ‘student’ friend to move in! The friend is studying for a degree, and I’m told also has a part time job. I’ve since contacted the partner/joint tenant who has confirmed the break up.
Obviously the situation is complex, as I’m dealing with news of a serious medical situation and a break up, all at once. My way of dealing with this is to just focus on the break up situation, and thinking about how to deal with one person moving out at the start of a tenancy.
I don’t feel comfortable about letting to a student. Our property has never been a student house, and in normal circumstances I would always decline student applications. I have lots of interest in the property, and often get multiple offers from professional people.
As a temporary solution I was considering allowing the remaining tenant to allow her friend to live at the property as a permitted occupier only. If so, the friend would be the responsibility of the current tenants, rather than an actual listed tenant, and I would accept no rent from the friend. If I did this the tenancy agreement could remain the same, with the current joint tenants listed on it. ie. Still liable for rent and care of the property.
I should point out the the remaining tenant and ‘friend’ think they can manage the rent together.
The break clause is in about 5 months time, so I was going to suggest to the existing tenants that this arrangement (with the friend living at the flat) ran until I could give notice to end the tenancy.
Does this sound like a fair solution? Is there anything I need to think about before suggesting this to the tenants. Thanks in advance.