Lodgers and Landlords’ Rights

The landlord is either the owner of the property in question or else they have a lodger agreement with the owner. The lodger is not a subtenant but does have certain rights.

The status of the lodger

A subtenant will have a tenancy agreement with the owner of the property. As such their rights include exclusive access of one room in the property. The landlord must gain permission by giving notice to enter this space.

This does not apply to lodgers as a rule. The agreement between the lodger and landlord may vary but usually involves renting one room and may sometimes include additions such as rights in regards to the shared living space, laundry, cleaning or provision of meals.

Another right that a subtenant has which a lodger may not is that the subtenant may be given permission to fit a lock on the door to the room that they are renting. A lodger shares facilities with the landlord whereas a subtenant does not.

The status of the landlord

A landlord who is allowed to rent out a room to a lodger is usually the property owner. If this is the case, check your mortgage agreement and check with your mortgage lender. In most cases, taking in a lodger will not be a problem for homeowners.

With regards to tenants who wish to take in a lodger, they must be renting out the whole property and have a spare room. The tenant must then get permission from the landlord before allowing a lodger to move in to the property.

Finally, with regards to council and housing association tenants who wish to take in a lodger, tenancy agreements differ. Check your agreement if in any doubt and inform the landlord as above with private tenants. If a tenant has a lodger move in and it is not specified in the tenancy agreement that this is permitted, then the tenant might face eviction.

The rights of the lodger

A lodger who shares facilities such as the kitchen and bathroom with the landlord has very few tenancy rights.

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For more information on:

  • The lodger’s rights at the end of the landlord’s tenancy 
  • The rights of the landlord