Right to Rent laws – guidance for tenants

Since 1 Feb 2016 all landlords have to check new tenants have a right to live in the UK under the ‘Right to Rent’ laws. Here’s what you’ll need to know as a tenant:

  • We have to check ALL tenants, even if you have lived here all your life. The check extends to everyone over the age of 18 living in the flat, even if they are not on the tenancy agreement
  • We need to see a document that proves you have right to live in the UK. This could be:
    • UK or EEA passport (may change after UK exits Europe)
    • Biometric Residence Permit with unlimited leave
    • Passport or travel document endorsed with unlimited leave
    • UK immigration status document endorsed with unlimited leave
    • A certificate of naturalisation or registration as a British citizen
    • Or at least two of a collection of other documents – see Gov.uk for a complete list
  • We need the original documents – copies are not acceptable, and need to check that they are yours by comparing photos or other ID
  • We need to make copies of your documents and keep the copies – you get the originals back
  • If you are not a British or EEA Citizen, we will need to check again after 12 months or when your permission to stay runs out, whichever is longer

There are some exceptions to the laws for certain types of housing, such as refuges or student halls of residence, but none of our properties qualify, so we will be checking every new tenant.

If you are not able to supply the right documents, we will have to pass your information to the Home Office for additional checks, and should get an answer within two working days. If you fail the check, we will not be allowed to rent to you – there are significant fines if we do so.

For more information on the Right to Rent laws see the official government advice as well as the long version with the full code of practice.

Note this information may change over time. Please check the links for the latest advice.

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