Your tenancy | An introduction to your rights as a tenant

Assured shorthold tenancy

This is the most common type of tenancy in England and is also known as an AST. It gives you a legal right to live in your home but allows us to apply to the courts to reclaim the property. We have a mandatory right for possession if we give two months’ notice.

Assured tenancy

This type of tenancy gives you a legal right to live in your home and gives you greater certainty. You have the right to remain in the property unless we can prove to the court that we have grounds for possession. You’re also entitled to apply to buy your home under the Right to Acquire scheme and exchange your home with another council housing or local authority tenant. You can apply to transfer to another one of our homes. You can pass your home on to a family member through succession or request permission for a lodger, subject to checks and conditions.

Starter tenancy

A starter tenancy is a type of assured shorthold tenancy. It includes a 12-month trial period when you have to take good care of your home (and garden if you have one), pay your rent on time and not cause any nuisance to your neighbours. If you follow the terms of the agreement, then your tenancy is converted to an assured tenancy that provides you more certainty.

Protected assured tenancy

This type of tenancy is the same as an assured tenancy. But it’s only available if you were a tenant in a Chelmsford Borough Council property when we took over ownership in March 2002 and still live in that same property now. Instead of the Right to Acquire, you may have the Right to Buy your home. This means, subject to eligibility and restrictions, if you’d like to buy your home, you can receive a discount off the market value.

Fixed-term tenancy

We’re in the process of converting our fixed-term tenancies to assured tenancies. This involves a review of the current tenancy before we make that change. We’re doing this so that we can give you stability and the freedom to choose the most appropriate housing for your needs. It also means you can move when you feel the time is right for you. See the assured tenancy section above for more information. 

You can read more about the rights that your tenancy agreement gives you in our Your tenancy leaflet[pdf] 1MB. You can also read our Tenancy Policy [pdf].

Cash incentives for moving to a smaller property

If you’re already one of our customers and live in a property that’s too large for your needs, you may be able to apply for our SpaceSaver scheme. This offers payment and other incentives if you move to a smaller home. For more information, please see our Spacesaver leaflet[pdf] 670KB.

Support we offer | From help with moving in and claiming benefits, to anti-social behaviour and domestic abuse, see how we support you.