You'll probably have heard the letters GDPR more times in the past few months than ever before in your life. In essence GDPR is an update to the UK Data Protection Act 1998, which began to be enforced on the 25th of May 2018. GDPR is designed to harmonize all the data privacy laws across the Euoropean Union as a whole. Depite Brexit, these EU rules will still apply to the UK once we leave the EU.
So how does GDPR affect Landlords?
In simple terms, due to the business relationship between a landlord and their tenant several items of personally identifying data will be held by any landlord such as: email, full names, address, telephone number, data used to obtain referencing and credit status… the list goes on.
This information you may well have a legitimate interest to legally hold, and you may even have to share it with other parties in order to fulfil your duties as a good landlord, such as credit referencing agencies, contractors, agencies, utilities companies… again the list goes on.
So as a landlord, even before this update you would have been what is referred to as a 'Data Controller' and may even have 'Data Processors' who help or work for you. If you manage a your property yourself and hold this information then you need to register with the ICO as a Data Controller (Currently the fee for this is £40 per year)
If you are using a Letting Agent to manage your property, then you do not need to register with the ICO, your agent must be registered as they will be managing the relationship and taking the appropriate steps to protect any of the data held.
Greerco Limited trading as Belvoir Aldershot is registered with the ICO - Registration number: ZA028798
If you are managing properties yourself then you will need to be taking steps to ensure that you are complying fully with the legislation and the main principals that they have set out, regarding storing and processing any personal data.
You can find more detail by visiting the ICO website and reading this guide - https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/guide-to-the-general-data-protection-regulation-gdpr/