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Home > My home > My agreement > Tenancy information > What to do when a tenant passes away

What to do when a tenant passes away

Losing a relative or friend is difficult and while grieving for your loss you are often required to deal with their effects and assets. We understand that there are a lot of arrangements to make and the following information aims to help with any concerns you may have.

Regretfully there are some practical matters with which we will need the help of the executor/next of kin. If there is anything you are not sure of, please contact us

Letting us know

Once you've registered the death you should notify us, if you haven't done so already.

You will need to tell us:

  • The name and address of the deceased customer.
  • The date the person died (we will also need a copy of the death certificate).
  • Your name, address and contact details.
  • What your relationship with the customer was. (If you are a friend of the deceased, we will ask you for details of relatives you may know about).
  • The details of the person acting for the estate, this could be you, another family member or the executor.

You can:

What happens next

We will only discuss personal information, such as account balances and ending a tenancy, with the designated person acting for the estate e.g. the person named in the will / executor or administrator.

Once notified, we'll then send them more detailed information about the next steps, including what documents we need to see, any forms that must be completed and what will happen with the property.

Succession of a Cottsway home

The following may be able to take over the tenancy if they have been living in the property as their main home:

  • Joint tenants
  • Customer's husband, wife or partner
  • Any family member living in the property as their main home for the 12+ months previous.

You can notify us of a succession claim when you Notify us of a customer death online. Alternatively, please contact us

Ending the tenancy

If you wish to end the tenancy, the executor or administrator of the estate must complete a ‘Termination of tenancy’ form – this will be sent out as soon as we are notified of the death. A four-week notice period will then start from the Monday after we receive the completed form.

Rent payments and returning the keys

Any outstanding rent will be charged to the late customer’s estate and full rent is payable until the keys have been returned to us (the four-week notice period will start from the Monday after we receive the completed Termination of tenancy form). If they paid their rent in advance, we will refund this to the their estate.

For more information see: Ending a tenancy

Moving out and emptying the property

The property should be left in good condition to avoid incurring any further costs:

  • The home and any garden or garage should be clean, tidy and empty of belongings.
  • Remove any non-Cottsway fittings eg carpets, curtains, curtain poles, sheds etc.
  • Repair any damage.

For advice on how to dispose of unwanted furniture, contact your local council.

Information about who else you need to notify

For more information on how to register the death, notify government departments and manage financial issues see: www.gov.uk/when-someone-dies

Tell us once service

Tell Us Once is a service offered by many local authorities. It enables you to report a death to most government organisations in one go, rather than having to contact them all individually. The service is free to use and can save you a great deal of time and effort.

NOTE: This service does not notify Cottsway so you must inform us separately.

Other services you need to notify

  • Local authority - to amend council tax and housing benefit (can be done as part of Tell us once service)
  • Department of Work and Pensions – to amend state pension and other benefits (can be done as part of Tell us once service)
  • Phone / broadband provider
  • Water and energy suppliers – if the property has a meter, you will need to give a meter reading.
  • Bank and any home insurer
  • TV licensing

You may also wish to redirect any post via the Post Office

Additional support 

Bereavement support payment

Bereavement Support Payment is money you can get if your husband, wife or civil partner dies. For more information about eligibility and how to claim, visit:

Emotional support

The free Cruse National Helpline offer a listening ear and emotional support to anyone who has lost someone they love or been affected by a bereavement. 

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