Following on from Part One of our Guide to Private Residential Tenancies ('PRT's) in Scotland, this second part looks at key terms.

A landlord is legally required to provide their tenant with a written tenancy agreement, and the Scottish Government 's Model PRT (as updated from time to time) is a good starting point. Landlords can use this or a different format of agreement.

Regardless of the format, certain core details, rights and obligations must be included, such as:


The name, address and contact details for the tenant, any letting agent, and landlord – including the landlord's registration number (in accordance with the legal requirement to join the Scottish Landlord Register).

Property details

The postal address, property type (e.g. flat, bungalow, semi-detached house etc), any additional areas, shared areas (e.g. a communal garden) or excluded areas.

Whether the property is furnished, or unfurnished. Any furniture included can be listed separately in an inventory or record of condition – this is not mandatory, but can be helpful as an agreed note of the items present in the property when the tenant moved in.

Rent pressure zone and House in Multiple Occupancy information must also be provided, if applicable to the property.

Start date

The date on which the tenant can move into the property. An end date cannot be provided in a PRT. In Part Three of this Guide we discuss how PRTs are brought to an end.

Rent and rent increases

The amount of rent which is payable together with frequency and method of payment. Any services which are included must also be detailed.

If payment is made in cash, the landlord must provide dated receipts to the tenant stating the amount and either the amount which remains outstanding, or that no amount remains outstanding.

Certain information must also be provided in relation to rent increases.


The amount of the deposit payable by the tenant (which cannot exceed an amount equal to 2 months' rent), and information about how the deposit will be held.

Notification about other residents

If a person aged 16 or over (who is not a joint tenant) occupies the property with the tenant as that person's only or principal home, the tenant must tell the landlord in writing that person's name and relationship to the tenant, and subsequently tell the landlord if that person later leaves the property.

Further information must be provided about the tenant's responsibility for the actions of other residents and about ensuring the property does not become an unlicensed 'house in multiple occupation'.


The landlord is responsible for paying premiums for any insurance of the building and contents belonging to him or her.

The tenant is responsible for arranging any contents insurance required for their own belongings.

Repairing standard

The landlord is responsible for ensuring that the property meets the Repairing Standard, and has a duty to repair and maintain the property throughout the tenancy.

Information must be provided about the Repairing Standard, and about the landlord's duty to carry out a pre-tenancy check of the property and to complete repairs of defects notified during the tenancy.

The tenant will be liable for the cost of repairs which are needed due to the fault or negligence of the tenant, other residents, or their guests.

Access for repairs, inspections and valuations

The tenant must allow reasonable access to the property for the landlord or others hired by them, for an authorised purpose where the tenant has been given at least 48 hours' notice, or where access is required urgently.

The landlord is not entitled to use retained keys to enter the property without the tenant's permission, except in an emergency.

Further mandatory provisions relate to:

  • Communication;
  • Occupancy and use;
  • Subletting and Assignation;
  • Overcrowding;
  • Absences;
  • Taking reasonable care of the property;
  • Legionella;
  • Respect for others;
  • Equality requirements;
  • Data protection; and
  • Ending the tenancy.

In addition to the mandatory provisions discussed above, the Model PRT also contains other discretionary clauses which can be kept, adjusted or removed – relating to contents, local authorities charges/taxes, utilities, alterations, common parts, and pets etc.

Additional terms can also be included as long as they comply with the law.

In Part Three of this Guide, we look at how PRTs are brought to an end, and in Part Four we consider related matters such as: the repairing standard; deposit requirements; landlord registration; letting agent registration; and house in multiple occupation (HMO) licencing.

The legal position on points covered in this Guide is correct as at the time of writing, but this area of the law is often subject to change and taking legal advice is recommended. To check the up-to-date position, or for further information or advice, please get in touch with your usual Brodies contact.


Ros James