Why do you particularly need the receipts?
Do you pay by cash or cheque?
Do you have evidence of the money to pay the rent coming from your bank account?
The problem with a licence as opposed to a lease, is that you can be given reasonable notice to quit as you have no protection under the Landlord and Tenant act 1954.
Usually, accountants and the revenue will accept payments coming out of your bank account as proof of payment so for future, simply make sure that all payments are made by cheque.
If you have bank statements showing payments made for the same amount consistently every month for example for 6 months in an eight-month period, they will usually believe that they were made for the other 2 months by cash because if they weren’t, the landlord would have given you notice.
If this was a residential property the landlord would have to give you a receipt. For commercial property, it’s just good practice.
If you want to push the point over the receipts, it’s likely that the landlord will just give you notice although that may be hot air. It depends if you want to take the risk of losing the property.
There is an argument to be had over whether this is a lease or a licence because it is the form of the document not what the document is called which confirms whether it is indeed a lease or a licence. If you have exclusive possession of the property it is likely to be a lease even though it says it is a licence. The leading case is Street v Mountford. However, it’s likely to be an expensive and drawnout legal battle to argue that point.
For now, you have to decide whether you are taking the landlord’s threat to give you notice to quit if you ask for more receipts or not.
By insisting on it, whether you are entitled to insist or not, and if you get them, you may win the receipt war, but lose the tenancy battle if she gives you notice.
Can I clarify anything else for you?
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If the husband shares the property, it is unlikely that you do not have a lease for the reasons I stated earlier, and it will be a licence, quite simply because you do not have exclusive possession.
If you have paid his electricity bill, you are entitled to recovery from him including through the Small Claims Court if necessary.
If she steadfastly refuses to give you a receipt, is to leave the property is going to cost her 1200 pounds per month. It depends if she wants to take the risk.
A court action for an injunction to compel her to give you a receipt is not guaranteed to succeed because there is no statutory liability to do so and even so, you could be looking at £5000 in legal costs to get there.
From what you have said, it seems likely that they may not have consent to sublet the property and they are doing so to recoup some of their costs. Don’t be at all surprised if you are paying the whole rent for the property and the husband is there rent free. You are entitled to contact the head landlord ask whether there is any consent to sublet and to tell the landlord exactly rent you are being charged.
If the landlady takes exception, she will give you notice. From an accounting point of view, I would not be concerned about not having a receipt for the rent provided you have proof of the payments that you paid by way of bank statements and diary notes which is what I mentioned earlier.
You can only get the whole building if your sub landlord agree or if the head landlord gives them notice on the basis that they are either late paying rent subletting without consent, and the head landlord allows you to take over.
I am glad to have helped you. Best wishes.