If there was evidence needed as to why landlords may need the expertise of letting agents, a new survey about Right To Rent is it.
That is because more than 90 per cent of landlords say they have received no information from government on their new legal duty to check the immigration status of their tenants - a task which came into law yesterday.
According to a survey of over 1,500 landlords, carried out by the Residential Landlords Association, 72 per cent of respondents do not understand their obligations under the policy, designed to make the country a more hostile environment for illegal immigrants.
The result will be that many landlords are unlikely to rent to those who cannot easily prove their right of residency, claims the RLA.
The survey also found that 44 per cent of landlords will only rent to those with documents that are familiar to them: the association believes this will cause serious problems for the estimated 17 per cent of UK nationals without a passport.
“The government argues that its Right To Rent plans form part of a package to make the UK a more hostile environment for illegal immigrants. The evidence shows that it is creating a more hostile environment for good landlords and legitimate tenants” says David Smith, RLA policy director.
“They can play it safe, and take a restrictive view with prospective tenants, potentially causing difficulties for the 12 million UK citizens without a passport. Alternatively, they may target certain individuals to conduct the checks, opening themselves up to accusations of racism” he says.