Right to Rent Final Change

  Landlords and lettings agents are no doubt aware of the numerous changes to the mandatory right to rent checks which were introduced in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. From tomorrow, the final change applies and there will hopefully be no more changes…   From 01/10/2022, you must carry out a prescribed check of a prospective tenant and any proposed occupiers’ right to rent. There are three options: 1. A manual right to rent check, i.e., in person, not virtually. 2. A right to rent check using Identification Document Validation Technology  (‘IDVT’) via the services of an identity service provider (‘IDSP’). 3. A Home Office online right to rent check. Conducting one of the above checks will provide you a defence against a civil penalty. It remains an offence to knowingly let property to an illegal migrant.   In addition, right to rent checks must be undertaken within specific time limits: 1. For prospective tenants and any occupiers with an unlimited right to rent, at any time before the residential agreement is entered into. 2. For prospective tenants and any occupiers with a time-limited right to rent, no earlier than 28 days before the start date of the tenancy agreement. 3. Where is it not possible to undertake checks before the residential tenancy is agreed, for example if the prospective tenant lives overseas and wishes to arrange accommodation in advance of their arrival, you can agree to a ‘tenancy in principle’ and must check the documents in person upon arrival.   You are protected from a civil penalty if you can show that you have correctly: 1. Conducted right to rent checks before authorising an adult to occupy rented accommodation, i.e., tenants and occupier over 18. 2. Conducted follow-up checks at the appropriate date if required because a tenant or occupier has a time-limited right to rent. 3. Made a report to the Home Office if follow-up checks indicate that a tenant or occupier no longer has the right to rent.   You can see the updated government guidance for full detail here. Above is a short outline, but landlords and lettings agents should make sure they check the guidance (87 pages worth!) for the full detail.   If you need support in relation to any residential landlord law related issue, then get in touch with Rebecca at Landlord Support for some free and friendly initial advice followed by fixed fee support throughout your case: 01704 790 532 rebecca@dwduk.co.uk www.landlord-support.co.uk

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