Brand new right to rent checks are set to go live in England in just under two weeks. The latest law means that from the 1st of February 2016, all tenants must be checked to ensure they have the right to rent in the UK.
Anyone 18 or over who pays to use your property as their main home, must be checked. These new right to rent checks must be made 28 days before the start of the tenancy.
The same applies if they already occupy your property – you must see whether they have already been checked.
It doesn’t stop here – additional checks will need to be taken down the line. These should be made just before either the expiry date of their right to stay in the UK, or 12 months after your previous check.
How do you make a right to rent check?
The government have listed the below as guidelines:
- Check which adults will live, or live, at your property as their only home, e.g. they keep most of their belongings there, and they’re registered to vote at the property.
- See the original documents that allow the tenant to live in the UK and check that their right to stay hasn’t expired. Other checks to make include ensuring the documents don’t look like they have been changed, and that the photographs are correct – make sure you do this with the tenant present.
- Make copies of any documents you have checked, and record the date you made the check.
If you fail to comply with the new right to rent checks, you’ll be faced with a government fine of up to £3,000 per tenant.
For further information, have a look at the online checking tool on GOV.uk.
What if the tenant doesn’t pass the new right to rent checks?
You must tell the Home Office, and you could be fined if you don’t.
If you want to, you can choose to evict your tenant, and if you have a lodger, you can choose to end your tenancy agreement with them.
How we help our landlords
We’ve made sure our agents are clued up on the new right to rent checks.
Once you’ve chosen us as your acting agent, we look after the referencing process for you, and carry out a complete reference check for all tenants over the age of 17.
We work closely with tenant referencing specialists Letsure and HomeLet, to ensure you only have tenants who have a legal right to rent in the UK move into your property.
Let us take care of the hard work for you – call 020 7078 0214 today to talk to one of our expert agents.