As part of the Immigration Act 2014, landlords are responsible for performing Right to Rent checks on prospective tenants before signing them up to a tenancy agreement.
This means meeting the prospective occupiers in person, checking their original documents and keeping a copy of the original document for up to 12 months after the end of the occupiers stay in the property.
This is sometimes difficult for landlords, particularly if they live far away.
Agents can take on responsibility for performing the Right to Rent checks but this responsibility can only be transferred in writing and many agent contracts do not currently have any clauses regarding Right to Rent responsibilities.
To help our landlords and agents we have prepared a Right to Rent responsibility transfer document so that agents can now perform the checks for the landlord.
However landlords are reminded that the final decision as to whether to rent out a property ultimately lies with them.
The agent is responsible for carrying out the checks, but if they tell the landlord the prospective tenants have no Right to Rent and the landlord lets the property to them anyway it is the landlord – not the agent – who would be prosecuted by the Home Office.