Pre-vetting your potential tenants is a vital step in renting out your property, as not only can it put your mind at ease that your property is in safe hands, but you must also check that they have the right to legally reside in the UK - you can ask to see their passport or immigration documents in order to assess their residential status. This is called the 'right to rent check'.
If you are caught renting a property to a tenant who does not have the right to rent, you could face an unlimited fine and up to five years in prison. In cases where the tenant cannot provide documentation, you can contact the Landlord Checking Service to find out their status.
Asking for references from previous landlords is a good way to root out potential tenants who may not respect your property or may cause harm or distress to other tenants in the property.
In cases where the potential tenant is renting for the first time, you can ask for a guarantor - this is someone who agrees to pay the rent on behalf of the tenant if they are for some reason unable to pay. You may also wish to obtain a reference from the tenant’s employer, to ensure that your tenant has a steady income from which they can pay their rent.
All landlords with properties in England must confirm new prospective adult tenants have the right to rent before the tenancy begins. You need to ask to see relevant documents.
Understanding and using landlord checking services is crucial for both landlords and tenants.
It is not only a legal requirement for landlords, but you really want to know who’s going to be living in your property: to make sure they are who they claim to be, can pay the rent and will look after your property.
For tenants, if you don't have the documents proving a valid right to rent, you will be denied access to the property.
We provide landlord insurance for a wide range of properties and tenants including multi occupancy, students, local authority placements, unoccupied and much more. See our landlord insurance page or call 0333 060 0915 for more.
We can offer cover for a range of commercial properties from our trusted network of leading insurers.
You can place just one commercial property or a whole portfolio under one policy, including standard and unoccupied residential and mixed-use buildings.
Alison Wild BCom (Hons), MAAT, MATT, Taxation Technician is a highly respected industry professional who has been working with and advising SMEs in areas including tax, pensions, insurance and marketing for over 25 years. She is a member of the Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT) and Association of Tax Technicians (ATT) and also has 20 years' experience as a residential landlord.
Date: October 20, 2023
Category: Commercial Property