Landlord ends a secure tenancy

When conditions of a secure tenancy are no longer met or when the landlord starts possession proceedings.

This content applies to England


Social landlords can ask the court to 'demote' a secure tenancy to a 12-month demoted tenancy as an alternative to seeking possession in antisocial behaviour cases.[1]

If during the probationary year the landlord has cause for complaint about the tenant's behaviour (including non-payment of rent), the tenancy can be terminated without the landlord needing to prove any grounds for possession.

Possession proceedings

To get possession of a property let on a secure tenancy, a landlord must:[2]

The landlord should comply with the requirements of the Pre-action Protocol for Possession Cases by Social Landlords before pursuing possession proceedings for rent arrears or on mandatory grounds.

Flexible/fixed-term secure tenancies

There are special requirements and prescribed forms for the notice that a landlord must serve to end a flexible/fixed-term tenancy.

Subletting the whole property

If a secure tenant sublets or parts with possession of the whole of the premises, the secure tenancy ends and security cannot be regained.[3] Subletting a social tenancy without permission is an offence. See Unauthorised subletting of social housing for details. 

The contractual tenancy remains. It can be brought to an end by the landlord serving a valid notice to quit and obtaining a court order.

Last updated: 16 March 2021


  • [1]

    s.82(1A) Housing Act 1985 and s.82A Housing Act 1985.

  • [2]

    s.83 Housing Act 1985; Sch.2 & 2A Housing Act 1985.

  • [3]

    s.93(2) Housing Act 1985; Brent LBC v Cronin (1997) 30 HLR 43, CA.