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Understanding a tenancy agreement

A residential tenancy agreement is formed when one person (the landlord) grants to another (the tenant) the right to occupy, whether alone or with others, residential premises in return for rent. An agreement may be in writing, verbal or even implied.

To be a residential tenancy agreement, an agreement must be in relation to residential premises let for the purpose of residence. An agreement to rent commercial premises (such as a shop) cannot be a residential tenancy agreement. An agreement to rent residential premises that are part of commercial premises or are situated on land let for commercial or agricultural purposes is not a residential tenancy agreement, unless the occupant of the residential premises is not the tenant under the commercial tenancy (in other words, is a sub-tenant).

For a tenancy agreement to come under the Residential Tenancies Act 1995 (SA), the tenant does not have to have sole possession of the premises. For example, where several people rent a house, sharing facilities such as kitchens, bathrooms and living areas but with a room each, there may be a residential tenancy agreement in respect of each individual tenant or as joint tenants. It is also not necessary that the whole of the premises be let to the tenant - the agreement can specify that part of the premises (such as a shed or a room) be kept for the use of the landlord.

Understanding a tenancy agreement  :  Last Revised: Thu Jul 21st 2016
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