My rental contract which I'm about to sign states the following clause.

"Further Charges to be paid by the Tenant: (...)" To pay the television licence regardless of the ownership of the transmission equipment;"

Is this clause enforceable? If not should I sign first and then mention that I will not be owning any broadcasting equipment and will not be paying the license fee or do I need to tell them in advance and ask them to strike the clause (they say the contract is non-negotiable).

If I sign the contract as is, do I really have to pay the fee even though I am not required by the licensing authority?

  • 1
    This is probably just trying to clarify that the landlord will not pay for a TV license, even if they are providing physical TV equipment as part of the rental.
    – alexg
    Oct 30, 2023 at 12:29
  • 3
    alexg is probably right, but that's a horrendously-written clause! "Regardless of who owns any receiving equipment" would be better (a TV licence does not license transmission!) Oct 30, 2023 at 12:34
  • Perhaps meant to cover BBC vs Sky vs whomever - the landlord is not responsible for whatever TV choices the renter makes.
    – Jon Custer
    Oct 30, 2023 at 12:38
  • Of course not – it means the tenant is responsible whoever owns the equipment (say rented equipment). But note that it's not just about owning a television. If you watch live on any channel, TV service or streaming service, or use BBC iPlayer, you need to be covered by a TV Licence. This applies to any device you use, including a TV, computer, laptop, phone, tablet, games console or digital box. Unless you are living in a vacuum it would be very unusual not to need a TV licence. Oct 30, 2023 at 18:02
  • 1
    @user71659 The community antenna is still receiving equipment, not transmission equipment. It might conceivably be called a distribution system, but that's not transmission either. Oct 30, 2023 at 18:31

1 Answer 1


UK's TV Licensing states

As a landlord, the TV Licence is your responsibility if you installed the device, unless the tenancy agreement specifies that it’s the tenants’ responsibility.

So the clause is an overall disclaimer of responsibility. It isn't a requirement to hold a TV license if you have no means of watching live TV or streaming services.

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