Your Tenancy

This section answers some of the questions you may have about your tenancy with us.

When you start your tenancy with us, we will ask you to sign a Scottish Secure Tenancy Agreement. It’s an important legal document which details your rights and responsibilities as a tenant in accordance with current legislation. If you are a joint tenant with another person, you both have equal rights and responsibilities. We will give you a copy of this agreement to keep.

A Scottish Secure Tenancy offers increased security for your tenancy and can only be ended in one of the following ways:

  • If you give at least 28 days notice
  • If you die and there is no one to succeed your tenancy
  • If there is a written agreement between you and Cairn to end the tenancy
  • If we get a court action to evict you
  • If you abandon the property

Your Responsibilities To Us

  • Pay rent and any service charges on time
  • Live in the property as your main home
  • Look after the property and keep it in good decorative order
  • Report repairs to us
  • Show respect to others at all times
  • Get permission from us before you make any changes to your tenancy or home
  • Allow our engineers access to service your boiler (if applicable)
  • Give us 28 days notice if you want to end your tenancy

Our Responsibilities To You

  • Provide a wind tight, watertight and habitable home
  • Keep the property in good repair and proper working order
  • Carry out repairs within our agreed timescale
  • Consult with you before setting new rental or services charges or making changes to our services

Absences From Home
Your Cairn tenancy will continue during absences from home due to holiday or illness, provided you continue paying your rent and meet the other tenancy conditions. If you live at Madelvic Square in Edinburgh or one of our sheltered or retirement courts please let our staff know if you plan to be away from home, even for a short while, so they know that you are safe and everyone can be accounted for in the event of an emergency.

For all other tenants, it is a good idea to let us know if you plan to be away from home for longer than two weeks.

The Right To Have A Joint Tenancy Or Take In Lodgers
We will be happy to advise you if you wish to have a joint tenancy with another person, take in a lodger, sub-let your home or transfer your rights to another person. Certain conditions will need to be met and you will require written permission first.

Further details on changing your tenancy can be found in your Tenancy Agreement.

The Right To Buy
The Scottish Government is ending the Right to Buy in 2016. Some of our tenants still have the right to buy but this will come to an end soon. Please contact us for more information in you would like to find out more.

The Right To Alter Or Improve Your Home
All tenants have the right to carry out improvements and alterations to their homes, such as installing a new shower, replacing windows or rewiring. You must ask for permission before work is carried out. We will not refuse permission unreasonably.

If you would like to make an improvement to your home, you must fill in an application form which you can get by contacting your local office. We may come and inspect your home before we give permission to carry out the work. Once the work is complete, you must tell us. We may ask to inspect the work to make sure it meets our standards. We will need copies of all the receipts you have for the work as soon as possible.

You may be able to receive compensation from us for certain improvements you have made to your home. For you to qualify for this compensation, we must have approved the improvement to your home and your tenancy must have ended.

You can find out more information in our Improvements & Alterations leaflet, on our website or by contacting us.

Mutual Exchanges And Transfers
If you are interested in swapping your home with another tenant, we can help you. Cairn tenants can swap houses with another Cairn tenant or another tenant from a different landlord. You must receive written permission from us before you are able to exchange your home. You can find out more information in our Exchanging Your Home leaflet, on our website or by contacting us.

You can apply at any time for a transfer to another Cairn house. Please contact us for advice and information on how to do this.

Keeping Pets
If you would like to keep a pet in your house you must get our permission first. Permission is usually given to tenants who have their own front door. It is our policy not to give permission to tenants who share a front door, such as most of our retirement courts and blocks of flats; however, we will consider all applications on a case-by-case basis. There are conditions to keeping a pet, such as ensuring that it is kept under control and is not a nuisance to your neighbours.