Landlords’ new border force obligations

12 Sep 2017


From 1st February 2016 the Government introduced new obligations for managing agencies and landlords to check that their tenants are legally eligible to live in their rented properties. If landlords fail to comply with these new obligations, they could be fined up to £3,000.


There are three types of “rights to rent” under these new obligations:


  • Unlimited rights to rent – this applies to British citizens, EEA and Swiss nationals as well as those who have been given the right to remain in the UK;


  • Time-limited rights to rent – as the name states, this applies to people who will need documentation to prove that they are entitled to remain in the UK; and


  • Those with no right to rent – this applies to everyone else who falls in to neither of the previous categories.


Exceptions to the rule

The only people exempt from these categories are those under the age of 18 and in those circumstances, landlords may allow those tenants to occupy the property but when the child reaches 18, further checks should be carried out in the event of an agreement renewal. Holiday accommodation is also exempt, as long as the letting period is stated in writing as being short term (less than three months) and the tenants will not remain after this period.

Homes owned by local authorities, social housing, care homes, hospitals, hostels and refuges are also excluded, as is tied accommodation, student accommodation and mobile homes.

It is worth noting that if your tenant’s rental agreement started before 1st February 2016, then a landlord is not required to take any action. However, it is recommended that you always carry out due diligence as the responsibility of the scheme falls back to the landlord – and they are the ones who are liable for the fine.



If you would like further information in relation to the new scheme, or you would like to discuss any other issues in relation to property tax or upcoming changes in the sector, then please contact one of the Real Estate team at DMH Stallard today to see how we can help.



Further reading

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New guidance issued for valuation of flats and investigating fire safety

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Cheraine Williams looks a the current situation facing leaseholders looking to sell or re-finance their property; will new guidance provide clarity?
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Government sets new energy targets for domestic and commercial buildings

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UK law requires net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050; new rules and standards for heating and powering buildings will have a significant impact
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Covid regs prevent landlords taking action to recover rent for more than 500 days

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Just seven days’ rent arrears used to be enough for commercial landlords to take action; the latest adjustment pushes that out to 554 days
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