NEWS: IMMIGRATION ACT 2014 – WEST MIDLANDS TO BE FIRST LANDLORD ‘RIGHT TO RENT’ CHECK AREA
Security Minister James Brokenshire today announced the new measures in the Immigration Act would be launched in Birmingham, Walsall, Sandwell, Dudley and Wolverhampton as part of a phased introduction across the country.
The new law will mean private landlords will have to check the right of prospective tenants to be in the country if they want to avoid potentially being fined up to £3,000.
Immigration and Security Minister James Brokenshire said: “We are building an immigration system that is fair to British citizens and legitimate migrants and tough on those who abuse the system or flout the law.
The right to rent checks are quick and simple, but will make it more difficult for immigration offenders to stay in the country when they have no right to be here.
They will also act as a new line of attack against unscrupulous landlords who exploit people by renting out substandard, overcrowded and unsafe accommodation.
Landlords in the West Midlands will have all the advice and support they need in advance of the checks going live on 1 December.”
Landlords will need to see evidence of a person’s identity and citizenship, for example a passport or biometric residence permit. Many responsible landlords already do this as a matter of routine, and most legal renters will have the correct documentation ready to hand. In most cases landlords will be able carry out these simple checks without need to contact the Home Office.
Copies of the documentation will need to be taken as evidence the checks have been carried out and retained for one year after the tenancy ends. Children under 18 will not need to be checked. More information about how to carry out a right to rent check is available online at www.gov.uk including eligibility for a free online Home Office checking service to confirm whether someone has a right to rent. A helpline (0300 069 9799) is also available.
Following an evaluation of the implementation in the West Midlands next spring, the Home Office expects to continue with the phased introduction of checks across the UK next year.
The Immigration Act 2014, which became law earlier this year, is a landmark piece of legislation which builds on the government’s ongoing reforms to make sure the immigration system works in the national interest. The Act is focused on stopping illegal migrants using public services to which they are not entitled, reducing the pull factors which encourage people to come to the UK for the wrong reasons, and making it easier for the Home Office to remove people who should not be here.
- Download the government’s ‘Right to rent’ leaflet
- Visit the government portal on ‘Right to Rent’ – www.gov.uk
MOULD, CONDENSATION & MOULD FREE HOME
This booklet gives some basic information about the different types of dampness that may affect your home.
Condensation is probably the biggest cause of damp in homes. A lot of information and advice is included in this booklet to help tenants and home-owners identify and reduce condensation as well as treating the mould growth often associated with it.
There is a product that has been on the market for some time and it is used by many local authorities. I was told about this product by a landlord who tested in during the winter of 2012. He used it on one of the walls forming a corner which were both solid brick walls with no cavity. The whole corner was black with mould. He used the cleaner provided to remove the mould and he then painted one of the two joining walls with this product. The following spring he returned to inspect and found a clear line where he had used the product and there was no mould at all. One the joining wall where he had used normal emulsion after cleaning it the mould had returned as before. I spoke to the manufacturers and told them that landlords needed this product but that we would not all want to buy in bulk. They were happy to sell single tins and even offered me a discount code to pass on to other landlords to give us 20% discount by using the Code SOL20
The product looks very like emulsion and is applied in the same way. It comes in white or magnolia as standard and can be tinted to order to any colour. It is manufactured in Redditch, Worcestershire and can be collected from the manufacturer or delivered anywhere in the UK. The cost is similar to a good emulsion. Once used it must not be painted over because it is the surface that contains the product that stops mould growth and it is guaranteed to work for 20 years – not that we would not repaint a wall for 20 years but when we do it must be with the same product to continue to prevent mould growth.
The name of the product is Glixtone Fungi-Shield Anti-Mould & Blackspot Paint. It can be used on external and internal walls and ceilings and it is solvent free, silicone free and none-toxic.
01527 599 470
IMPORTANT: Update to the Midland Landlord Accreditation Scheme (MLAS) Terms and Conditions
This is to inform you that MLAS has updated the Terms and Conditions of membership. These terms and conditions will apply to all members from 1st February 2014.
The changes have been made in order to ensure that MLAS continues to be a “kite mark” of good practice for tenants to look for when searching for privately rented properties.
Should you decide that you cannot accept these changes and wish to withdraw from membership please let MLAS know by return. In the event that you do withdraw from membership you must tell your existing tenants with 14 working days, remove mention of MLAS from your documents and websites and ensure that your future tenants are not relying on your membership of MLAS.
If you do not withdraw from membership please be aware that MLAS will consider that you have agreed to abide by the new Term and Conditions which replace those that you signed when you joined the scheme. NB All members signed the existing terms and conditions (Code of Conduct) when you joined the scheme and copies are held on file.