Your tenancy

This section gives you information to help you manage your tenancy. It also offers advice on how to look after your home and the area where you live. We believe everyone should be able to live in their home and community in quiet enjoyment, without fear of harm, alarm or distress.

Find out more about different housing options available here.

Your commitment

When you signed your tenancy or licence agreement, you promised that you, the people who live with you and visitors to your home would do the things listed in that agreement. Please read this agreement for details or contact your local office.

What type of tenancy do I have?

Most of our customers will have an assured non-shorthold tenancy. However, you might have been given another type of agreement.

What are the different types of tenancies?

Assured non-shorthold tenancies

This is the type of tenancy agreement that housing associations normally use. It contains your rights and responsibilities.

Secure tenancies

These were used by Orbit Housing Association for customers who moved into their homes before 15 January 1989.

Assured shorthold tenancies

These are used for people under the age of 18. They’re also given to people who are provided with accommodation on the understanding that they agree to receive support.

Starter tenancies

These are occasionally used to help combat nuisance and anti-social behaviour, and achieve safer and better managed estates. They’re used in certain areas after full consultation with local customers and the council. They’re given to all new tenants who move into the area and last for a maximum of 12 months. If the tenant hasn’t breached any of the conditions at the end of this period, they automatically convert to an assured tenancy.

Fixed Term Tenancies 

Orbit offers Fixed Term tenancies for a period of 5 years. These tenancies are intended to last only for a set period of time (5 years) and are classed as an assured shorthold tenancy.  At least 12 months prior to the expiry of your tenancy, Orbit will contact you to review your situation and to determine whether a new tenancy will be offered.

In the event that we do not offer you another tenancy, then we will provide advice and assistance to support you to meet your housing needs. It is important for you to understand that at the end of the 5 year period, there is no automatic right to a further tenancy under this scheme. For more information please contact us

Licence agreements

These are used when the accommodation is not self-contained and facilities like the kitchen are shared between more than one household. The accommodation is often provided for a specific need and includes support.

To check which type of agreement you have, look at the document you signed when you moved into your home. If you’re not sure, or have any questions or concerns, please contact us.

What rights does my tenancy give me?

Tenancy and licence agreements are legal contracts that list your rights and responsibilities.

The assured non shorthold tenancy and the secure tenancy give you the most rights. These include the right to:

  • stay in your home 
  • pass on your home to a family member (this is known as succession) 
  • take in lodgers and sublet rooms (Right to Rent checks)
  • make improvements 
  • receive compensation for improvements you’ve funded if you move to another home shortly after they’re made 
  • repair your home
  • do a mutual exchange 
  • receive information 
  • be consulted 
  • complain.

Sometimes these rights will also include the Right to Buy or the Right to Acquire .

Assured shorthold tenancies and starter tenancies don’t include the rights to:

  • succession
  • make improvements
  • take in lodgers and sublet
  • do a mutual exchange.

As a licence agreement is for accommodation with some shared areas, it only includes the right to information and the right to complain.

While the above rights are set out in housing law, some tenancy agreements might also include additional rights. Please check your agreement carefully.