The majority of UK landlords remain oblivious to new laws which will require them to conduct compulsory immigration checks on prospective tenants, according to a new survey.
Research by the website Easyroommate.co.uk revealed that 80 per cent of private landlords knew nothing about the new legislation – which will be rolled out to the West Midlands within a matter of weeks.
And even those who are aware of the “right to rent” checks were unsure of the timetable for the new requirements – which are set to be phased in around the rest of the UK next year.
The sheer number of people who don’t know about the new legislation is likely to concern the Home Office, who hope that introducing the checks will make it easier to identify illegal immigrants.
Perhaps more worrying is that even once they were informed of the changes, nearly a third of landlords surveyed said that they intended to ignore the new rules –risking fines of up to £3000.
Easyroommate.co.uk spokesperson Maya Harruna said: “It’s unfortunate to see that not many landlords are aware of the Right to Rent legislation, especially since it is due to launch shortly.
“Considering the harsh financial penalties, it is essential that homeowners are made fully aware of all aspects and can confirm if the new rules apply to them or not.”
Ministers have already announced that there will be a helpline to advise individuals about the new requirements, while a code-of-practice has also been issued to explain how the checks will operate.