As of the 1st of February 2016 the new ‘Right to Rent’ landlord checks will come into effect across England.
According to Gov.UK, the new law requires all landlords to carry out checks on the prospective tenant’s eligibility to reside in the UK or else be susceptible to a fine up to £3000 even imprisonment.
However, in spite of the role out of the law today, the RLA investigation has shown that 9 out 10 landlords have received no information or guidance on what checks them must do and how to carry out these checks, leaving the majority of landlords vulnerable to heavy fines and potential discrimination law suits.
The ‘Right to Rent’ checks have come under heavy criticism from many charities and landlord associations.
The Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants, (JCWI), have stated that, the scheme will increase discrimination against both migrants and British citizens without documents, with almost 20% of British Citizens not holding a passport.
Furthermore, their investigation revealed that the, “The scheme will not target its intended audience, 'undocumented migrants' as they rarely enter into private tenancies”.
Moreover, “the burden will fall on local authorities who are not prepared for the scheme and who will experience an increased workload.”
Landlords will also be put under extreme pressure, confusion and extra costs to ensure that properties are rented out to entitled tenants.
Policy director for the Residential Landlords Association, Dr David Smith has expressed his fears on the impact of the ‘Right to Rent’ policy, “The Government argues that its ‘Right to Rent’ plans form part of a package to make the UK a more hostile environment for illegal immigrants. The evidence shows that it is creating a more hostile environment for good landlords and legitimate tenants.”