The latest immigration regulations have a significant impact on private residential landlords and their agents. Landlords now have a legal duty to ensure that they do not rent their property to a tenant who does not have the right to live in the UK.
As as ever, ignorance of the law is no excuse for non-compliance! Indeed this is just one of hundreds of regulations affecting landlords in this increasingly regulated field. Our wonderful area has long benefitted from an influx of hard-working legal immigrants but this in itself also attracts the illegal ones. According to government research, 85% of illegal immigrants use private rented accommodation within a year of arrival here.
Landlords need to take serious notice of the implications. The new measures are designed to make it much harder for illegal immigrants to secure private housing, thereby deterring them in future, as well as tackling rogue landlords who exploit illegal migrants by housing them in “beds in sheds” or other unhealthy living conditions.
So from October Landlords and their agents will effectively have to vet tenants in much the same way as employers do now.
This means taking steps to check the lawful immigration status of individuals before allowing them rent or occupy a property, with financial penalties for landlords who fail to comply. At Oakfield Estate Agents as fully qualified letting and property management specialists, we embrace these regulations.
Our role is to remain fully informed about any new regulations and ensure that our landlords can sleep easy knowing that not only do they have great tenants, rent and well maintained properties, but that they have complied with any regulations. Our tenants like it that way too! That’s why they tend to stay!
Neil Newstead FARLA, MNAEA
CEO – Oakfield Estate Agents