What is a Private Residential Tenancy

A Private Residential Tenancy is the new type of Tenancy introduced in Scotland in December 2017.

A Private Residential Tenancy (PRT) is defined as:

  • If the property is let to a person as a separate dwelling.

  • A property can still be considered a separate dwelling even if some of the core facilities are shared with other tenants. For example, if a tenant rents only a bedroom in a flat, but has a right to use a shared bathroom and kitchen, the property will be treated as a separate dwelling because the tenant has access to the range of facilities required for it to be regarded as a separate dwelling.

  • If the tenant lives in it as their only or main home.

  • If the tenancy isn't excluded under schedule 1 of the Act.

Tenants will have the protections of a private residential tenancy, even if you give them a tenancy agreement for any other type of tenancy.

The main differences from previous Short Assured Tenancies include:

  1. Tenancies no long have an end date - so they are essentially open-ended. This means that a tenant can stay for as long or short time as they wish and they no longer need to commit to a 6 month term minimum.

  2. Rent reviews can only be carried out on an annual basis. Any rental increases must be given to tenants in writing 3 months before the increase is due to increase.

  3. Tenants are able to challenge any rent increases if they feel the increase is unfair by referring it to a rent officer. Since the introduction of the 2017 Private Residential Tenancy scheme, a landlord can only make a rent increase once every 12-months, and are required to give tenants three months’ written notice of any rise. 

  4. There are now 18 reasons for eviction, which means that if your tenant doesn't want to leave you can apply to the First Tribunal for an eviction under these grounds. The 18 reasons are split into 2 sections 1. Mandatory including the Landlord intends to sell, Landlord intends to refurbish, Landlord intends to live in the property, plus 8 Discretionary reasons such as a member of the Landlords family intends to live in the property, the tenant has breached a term, display antisocial behaviour etc.

    For a full list of reasons for eviction click here.

  5. Longer notice period. If a tenant has lived in the property for longer than 6 months landlords will have to give you at least 84 days notice to leave (unless you've broken a term in the tenancy agreement).