Mak­ing sure ten­ants have right to rent in Eng­land

Harefield Gazette - - PROPERTY -

WITH Jan­uary prov­ing to be a tri­umphant start to the year, Lakin & Co has been mak­ing time to ad­vise its clients on more govern­ment changes that will af­fect them this year.

As some land­lords will be aware, as of last Mon­day (1 Fe­bru­ary), land­lords of prop­er­ties through­out Eng­land are now re­quired to check that some­one has the right to rent, be­fore let­ting a prop­erty to them. Be­fore the start of a new ten­ancy, land­lords must make checks for ten­ants aged 18 and over even if; they’re not named on the ten­ancy agree­ment, there’s no ten­ancy agree­ment and if the ten­ancy agree­ment isn’t in writ­ing.

Im­por­tant copies of doc­u­ments such as pass­ports and visas will need to be taken and re­tained and land­lords will be re­quired to keep copies of the ten­ants’ doc­u­ments through­out the rental term and for one year af­ter­wards.

If the Home Of­fice holds a ten­ant’s doc­u­ments, land­lords can use an on­line right-to-rent check­ing ser­vice at www.gov.uk, which also has de­tails of a land­lord helpline.The govern­ment has pro­duced a user guide which can be found on its web­site too, pro­vid­ing in­for­ma­tion about the rules for doc­u­ment checks and ex­am­ples of ac­cept­able doc­u­ments.

If the ten­ant is only al­lowed to stay in the UK for a lim­ited time, land­lords will need to carry out the check in the 28 days be­fore the start of the ten­ancy.There are some in­stances where land­lords won’t need to check ten­ants in some types of ac­com­mo­da­tion (eg so­cial hous­ing and care homes).

Land­lords must also make a fur­ther check on their ten­ants to make sure they can still rent prop­erty in the UK if their per­mis­sion to stay is time lim­ited, oth­er­wise a fine could be im­posed (also known as a civil penalty) if they don’t make a fur­ther check and the ten­ant’s per­mis­sion to stay runs out.

Fur­ther­more, land­lords must tell the Home Of­fice if they find out that ar ten­ant can no longer legally rent prop­erty in Eng­land af­ter mak­ing a fur­ther check, again they can be fined if they don’t. Penal­ties for not com­ply­ing with the new rules can carry hefty fines of up to £3,000.

If you’re a land­lord, don’t be caught out. Get in touch with a let­ting agent who car­ries out the right checks for you on your ten­ants – call Lakin & Co to­day on 01895 544 555.

MAK­ING THE RIGHT CHECKS: Lakin & Co can make life much more straight­for­ward for land­lords by car­ry­ing out right-to-rent checks on their be­half.

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