Updated: Jun 26
Under the Right to Rent scheme, both landlords and tenants have certain rights which are designed to promote fair renting practices for all. However, the Right to Rent scheme also expects private landlords to check their tenants’ immigration statuses and they could be fined up to £5,000 for every person found in a property without the right to rent. For years, this rule was easy to understand and UK landlords had very little issues. That is, until the Brexit referendum.
Following the Brexit referendum in 2016 and all of the confusion that has accompanied it, the British government has not published any guidance on how landlords can handle their tenants' changing immigration statuses after the UK leaves the EU. Experts agree that this could cause a hostile rental market, leaving many non-UK citizens without homes.
Landlords Even More Hesitant To Let Their Properties
The failure to publish any guidelines on how best to navigate letting residential property to non-UK citizens process after the UK leaves the EU could make landlords even more hesitant to let their properties to anyone from outside the UK.
The policy director for the Residential Landlords Association, David Smith stated that:
“Landlords are not border police and cannot be expected to know who does and who does not have the right to live here. The government needs to publish clear and practical guidance for landlords about who they can and cannot rent to. If they do not, more landlords will become increasingly fearful about renting to non-UK nationals with the potential of facing prosecution. The result will be they will avoid renting to anyone who is not a UK national making life difficult for EU nationals.”
The Brexit Effect On Tenants And Landlords
How many people could this effect? UK housing commission experts say that with almost two thirds of all EU nationals in the UK living in private rented housing, it could affect tens of thousands. Currently, private UK landlords are being told to continue performing the Right to Rent checks. When that will change is still unclear, leaving many landlords concerned about the legalities of the matter and if they will be fined or not. Clear guidance is needed as it will allay any concerns that both landlords and tenants might have.
Contact Serenity Law
To learn more about how Brexit will affect UK landlords and the Right to Rent scheme, contact Serenity Law today and speak with a member of our real estate team who can answer any questions you might have about landlord/tenant rights.
If you enjoyed this article, please feel free to share it on your favourite social media sites.