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Ending your tenancy

Coronavirus (COVID-19) update

    Ending your tenancy:

    • We advise that you do not move home at this time if you can possibly avoid it, in line with government instructions.
    • We are currently unable to attend home visits except in emergencies and are dealing with unavoidable tenancy terminations over the phone. You can serve the required written notice to end your tenancy by writing to us, but we can also assist you in ending a tenancy by email.
    • If you need to end a tenancy for a South Tyneside Council or South Tyneside Housing Ventures Trust property, please contact us for advice and assistance on 0300 123 6633.

    Returning keys for a former home:

    • We are asking customers not to leave their homes to return keys for a former home at this time.
    • If you are vacating one of our properties, we need to speak to you so that we can make arrangements to ensure the property is safe and the gas supply is capped, so please do contact us.

    What if I have ended my tenancy but am no longer able to move?

    • We understand that if you had been planning to move you may need to stay in your home after your tenancy ends due to the current situation.
    • If so, we will support you to remain in your home under a Use and Occupation Account until you are reasonably able to move. In these circumstances we ask that you continue to adhere to the terms of your former tenancy agreement. You will be asked to pay a Use and Occupation Charge while you continue to use the property, which will equal the standard rent and service charges for the property.
    • If you no longer wish to end your tenancy after already giving notice, you can submit a request for your tenancy to be reinstated. Please email your request to or write to our Housing and Area Management team at South Shields Town Hall, Westoe Road, NE33 2RL.

    Thinking of ending your tenancy with us? - Get in touch

    Before you make a decision: 

    • Is there anything we can do to resolve any issues you're having or to help you feel happier in your home?
    • Or perhaps we can help you to find a different home? 

    Either way, please get in touch. We'll do what we can to help.

    If you do decide to end your tenancy, we'll try to make it as smooth and as simple as possible.

    Contact us: 


    1. Give four weeks' notice
    2. What happens after your contact us
    3. Property inspection
    4. Before you move out 
    5. Joint tenancies 
    6. Bereavement
    7. Transferring your tenancy to another home 
    8. £75 reward scheme
    9. Handing in your keys

    Give four weeks' notice

    To end your tenancy, you must give us at least 4 weeks' notice in writing. Your tenancy must end on a Monday.

    What happens after you contact us

    When you tell us that you would like to end your tenancy, we will arrange for an Allocations Officer to work with you.

    The Allocations Officer will:

    • guide you through the process of ending your tenancy
    • carry out an inspection of your property
    • advise you of your responsibilities

    Property inspection

    Before the inspection, make sure: 

    • you have reported any repairs to us - report a repair
    • your home is clean and tidy 

    During the inspection, the Allocations Officer will: 

    • inspect your property - this may identify work that needs to be done before you leave, giving you time to do so before you move out to avoid any charges
    • help you to complete the paperwork needed to end your tenancy
    • answer any questions you may have

    If you don't allow us to carry out an inspection, or if you aren't home when we attend a pre-arranged visit, you may miss out on valuable information that could help you avoid any charges after your tenancy ends. You also won't qualify for our £75 tenant reward.

    Before you move out

    Make sure your home is in a good condition:

    • Leave your home clean and tidy 
    • Repair any damage to your home before you move out - otherwise, you will be responsible for the cost of any repairs needed

    Remove all possessions before returning the keys, including: 

    • furniture, rubbish, floor coverings (including items in gardens, sheds and lofts) - anything left behind will be disposed of, and you will need to pay a clearance charge
    • animals - you will be charged for any costs incurred for the care of any animal left behind, and we may need to report the neglect or abandonment of an animal to the relevant authorities
    • furniture pack - if you have a furniture pack in your home, contact Your Homes Newcastle to arrange for it to be collected before you leave, if you don't you may be charged for missing or damaged items (furniture packs cannot be transferred from one property to another, and must be returned when you move)
    • decking, sheds, greenhouses, other structures or alterations may need removing - speak with your Allocations Officer to make sure you know what is required, and follow their advice

    Arrange to pay for any outstanding charges. Once your tenancy has ended, you will still be responsible for any outstanding rent and other payments (such as those for rechargeable repairs).

    You must not allow any person to stay in your home after your tenancy ends. If anyone living with you doesn't have alternative living arrangements in place, they should contact our Housing Solutions Service as soon as possible for advice and assistance.

    Joint tenancies

    A joint tenancy will end when any of the joint tenants gives us four weeks' notice that they would like the end the tenancy.

    If one of the tenants wishes to continue living in the property, they should contact us as soon as possible to discuss the possibility of being granted a sole tenancy.


    If you are ending a tenancy on behalf of a tenant who has passed away, an appointment will be made with an Allocations Officer to discuss this.

    We are here to support you through this process, and we try to make it as simple as possible.

    It is important to know that Housing Benefit or the Housing Element of Universal Credit will stop immediately, so we respectfully advise that you end the tenancy and return the keys for the property as soon as you reasonably can.

    Transferring your tenancy to another home

    If you are transferring to another South Tyneside Homes property, we will inspect your home to make sure it is clean, tidy, undamaged and in good decorative order before the move can be approved.

    If your home is found not to meet our required Lettable Standard, any offer of accommodation may be withdrawn. You may be given 48 hours to address any issues if it is reasonable to do so.

    An Allocations Officer will discuss and agree with you the moving date to your new home at the accompanied viewing of the property you will be moving to.

    £75 reward scheme

    South Tyneside Homes will pay a £75 reward to those tenants who meet their responsibilities and leave their home and garden in a good condition. To qualify for this payment, you must:

    • give a minimum of four weeks' notice to end the tenancy
    • not be in breach of any tenancy conditions
    • not have any legal proceedings against you that relate to your tenancy
    • be available for pre-termination inspections and attend pre-scheduled appointments
    • return all keys and fobs for the property, including those for post boxes and communal doors, on or before the Monday on which your tenancy ends
    • have provided reasonable access for gas servicing during your tenancy
    • make good any damage to your home before you leave
    • remove all of your possessions from the property before returning the keys, including furniture, rubbish and floor coverings. This includes items in gardens, sheds and lofts
    • allow us into your home to carry out relevant tests, such as electric checks
    • if you owe any outstanding rent or charges - you must have entered an agreement to pay your outstanding debt, and agree to the £75 reward being credited to your rent account

    The reward can only be paid to the tenant. The reward for a joint tenancy must be paid to a joint bank account, unless we get written permission from both joint tenants to pay it to a sole account.

    Handing in your keys

    It is very important that all keys, including for post boxes and communal entrances, are returned on or before the Monday on which your tenancy ends.

    Return keys to either:

    • Housing Solutions Service, Unit 3, Middlefields Industrial Estate, Heddon Way, South Shields, NE34 0NT (open 8.30am to 5pm Monday to Thursday and 8.30am to 4.30pm on Fridays)
    • your Housing Plus Officer

    When you hand in your keys, we will give you a receipt. Please keep this for your records.

    If any keys are not accounted for, you could be charged. 

    If you cannot travel to us or you need advice about your housing situation, contact our Housing Solutions Service.