Who do you have to check?

Before the start of a new tenancy, you must check all occupants aged 18 and over, even if:

  • they’re not named on the tenancy agreement
  • there’s no tenancy agreement
  •  the tenancy agreement is not in writing

If the tenant is a Commonwealth citizen but does not have the right documents – they might still have the right to rent in the UK. To find out if this applies to the Tenant, you may have to check with the home office. Find out more Here: https://www.gov.uk/windrush-prove-your-right-to-be-in-the-uk

How do you check your tenants right to rent.

  1. Check which of your tenants will be using your property as their main property (this only applies to tenants that are 18+).
  2. Ask them for documents that show they have the right to rent in the UK. These include: Passports/Identity cards/Registration Certificates/UK Immigration status documents/A document issued by the Home Office/ – Find a comprehensive list here: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government.pdf
  3. Check their documents to make sure they have the right to rent in the UK.
  4. With the tenants present check that the documents presented are genuine and that they belong to the tenants in question.
  5. In order to prove that you have checked the tenants right to rent you will need to make copies of the tenants documents and record the date of the check.

Checking that the property is the tenants main home

As a landlord you should check that the tenant is using your property as their main home. Signs that the tenant is not using the property as their main home include:

  • They don’t register the property as their main address for: Registering to vote, registering with the doctor etc.
  • They don’t spend the majority of their time there
  • They don’t live there with the rest of the family: Partner, children etc.
  • They don’t store the majority of their possessions in the property

Checking original documents

What to do if the tenant doesn't have the right documents

If the tenant doesn’t have the appropriate documents and:

  • The home office has their documents
  • They have an outstanding appeal/ request for documentation
  • They have been told by the home office that they have the right to rent

You can use the government’s landlord checking service: https://eforms.homeoffice.gov.uk/outreach/lcs-application.ofml


Do not rent a property to a tenant that does not have the appropriate documents, or that the government has informed you they do not have the right to rent.

Contact us

If you need any help with tenant checks then contact a member of staff to help you out

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