It has been revealed recently that almost 1 in five tenants do not want to share their immigration status with their landlord. This brings the question so you really know who is renting your property?
It has been revealed recently that almost 1 in five tenants do not want to share their immigration status with their landlord. This brings the question so you really know who is renting your property? Belvoir Liverpool West Derby carry out a full referencing service and let you know full details about the tenants that we source. We also ask for photo ID and proof of address from the tenants. Renting your own property out privately do you do this? If not then you could be looking at a hefty fine.
Almost one in five tenants do not want to share their immigration status with their landlord, according to the latest tenant index from the National Landlords Association (NLA).
Under the new legislation coming into force in April 2014, would-be tenants will have to produce evidence from a checklist of documents that they have permission to be in the UK and landlords will have to take a copy for their records.
Valid documents include a British passport, or a combination of birth certificate, national insurance number and driving licence, naturalisation certificate or right of abode certificate. Landlords will have to check the papers of all adults who will be living in the property. However, the new legislation does not apply to tenants who are already resident in a property.
The new reforms that require landlords or their letting agents to undertake immigration status checks on prospective tenants are expected to take effect in the next 6 months. From April next year the liability for non-compliance will rest with the letting agent or the landlord and they could face fines of up to £3,000 for renting to illegal immigrants.
Private landlords and agents will have to carry out checks on the migration status of every tenant before renting out a room or house. First time offenders will be fined £1,000 per illegal immigrant in their property. But those sent an ‘advisory letter’ or warning about failing to make proper checks within the last three years will be forced to pay £3,000 per tenant. The rules could also be extended to cover families who take in lodgers, although the fines would be between £80 and £5,000 per illegal immigrant.
According to LetRisks, a leading provider of landlord insurance and tenant referencing, the new legislation places onerous responsibilities for immigration at the hands of letting agents and landlords.
Michael Portman, MD of LetRisks comments:
“The Government considers that the letting agent should bear the liability for failing to perform the check, if they are carrying it out on behalf of the landlord.
If it is clearly documented that the letting agent is responsible for performing the required checks on the tenant, then the letting agent will be liable for any of the fines for failing to make the checks. Where there is no such transfer of responsibilities, liability for failure to check the migration status of the tenant will remain with the landlord.
Landlords and agents will have a duty to carry out periodic checks on tenants who have limited leave to remain in the country. There is a real concern that this will discourage landlords and letting agents from taking on certain tenants, because the burden of responsibility is too great.”
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