Swapping one flat mate before end of an AST (less than 6 moths remaining)?

Continuing the discussion from Is it possible to transfer my tenancy to a new housemate?:

Similar question from a landlord perspective.
12 mth contract to end July.
One of the tenants wants to leave now (the other 2 wanting to leave at the end of July). They want to get a replacement in from now until the end of July, at which time all will leave.
How can this be managed? Guess we can’t do a new tenancy as advised above since the period is less than the minimum 6mths of as AST.?
Any other options?

Hi Nick/Janet!

You can still make this change using OpenRent (the original thread has a link with guidance on this).

Having said that, it’s best to be aware that The Housing Act has statutory notice periods governing Assured Shorthold Tenancies and stipulates that a landlord cannot legally obtain possession of a property in the first 6 months.

This means that if you signed a short fixed term and the tenant refused to leave at the end of it, you would be unable to legally regain possession, and so effectively means 6 months is the minimum term a landlord would usually agree to.

You can of course still proceed with the new Rent Now application by adjusting the fixed term, we just want to make sure you’re aware of the legal position before signing a fresh tenancy agreement on these terms!