New ID check functionality added to RPS to help clients comply with Right to Rent policy

30th Nov 2015

The government has announced that from 1st February 2016 it is a legal requirement for letting agents and private landlords to check new tenants have the right to be in the UK before entering into a rental contract with them. Failure to comply with this ‘Right to Rent’ policy will result in penalties of up to £3,000 per tenant.

Right to Rent was introduced in the Immigration Act 2014 as part of the government’s reforms to build a fairer and more effective immigration system. The first phase was launched in parts of the West Midlands, and the next stage of the scheme is national roll out which will be enforced from the start of February 2016.

Under ‘Right to Rent’, identity documents should be checked for all new tenants, and copies should be taken and stored. A range of commonly available documents can be used including visas and passports. If a potential tenant has an outstanding immigration application or appeal with the Home Office, landlords can conduct a check on that person’s right to rent via the Landlords Checking Service.

Reapit is ahead of the curve and has introduced new functionality in the latest release of RPS 12 in accordance with the new UK government regulations. Users can now store primary and secondary ID documentation in text format or as an electronic file, set a reminder for when ID is due to expire which is flagged within a chosen number of days before the expiry date, and report on ID information to identify failed identity checks, contacts who don’t have ID documentation stored and contacts with documentation that is due to expire. There are also security settings that can be applied to limit access that other RPS users within your organisation have to ID documentation.

Carter Jonas’s Head of Residential Lettings, Lisa Simon commented: “It’s good to hear that Reapit are well prepared ahead of this legislation coming in on 1st February. At Carter Jonas we are putting procedures in place to deal with this and having a software system to help us is very reassuring.”

Matt Goddard, director at Reapit commented: “We always look to encourage best practice amongst our clients and provide solutions that simplify processes for compliance.  By introducing this functionality months in advance, our clients can act early and audit their database to ensure they are compliant in time for the 1st February.”