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Landlords can continue to carry out Right to Rent checks on video

2-minute read

Mollie Millman

25 June 2021

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Landlords can continue to carry out Right to Rent checks by video until the end of August, according to the latest government guidance.

The revision was an emergency measure introduced because of coronavirus and was due to end on 20 June.

But the extension means that landlords and letting agents will still be able to carry out the checks by video throughout the summer.

There are also new rules being introduced for checking the immigration status of tenants who are from the EU.

What are Right to Rent checks?

Right to Rent checks mean landlords must check that a tenant is legally able to live in a property in England.

It involves checking their passports and any relevant documentation before a tenant moves into the property.

Landlords and letting agents previously needed to check a tenant’s original documents in person, but the government changed this because of Covid-19 and social distancing.

Checking documents in person

These emergency changes were introduced in March last year and meant that the documents could be checked via video.

However, that option was due to end this month, with full face-to-face checks due to return on 21 June.

The extension means landlords and lettings agents will now not be required to start doing the checks face-to-face until the beginning of September.

Checking the passports of EU nationals

The government introduced this extension following its decision to delay the full removal of coronavirus restrictions in England.

And after 1 July, it said that agents and landlords won’t be able to take EU nationals’ passports and must use the government’s online Right to Rent checking system instead.

This means that you’ll need to check their immigration status rather than their nationality.

Timothy Douglas, policy and campaigns manager at Propertymark comments: "Landlords should ensure the security and integrity of their Right to Rent checks.

“They may wish to consider if there are opportunities to safely carry out standard Right to Rent checks in advance of the temporary measures coming to an end – particularly where a tenancy agreement does not start until or after 1 September 2021.

“This is the second time that the return to in-person Right to Rent checks has been delayed in line with wider government safety guidance and Propertymark has been in contact with the Home Office following the Prime Minister's announcement on continued restrictions.”

What do you think about carrying out Right to Rent checks by video? Let us know in the comments below.

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