April
12
2018
Author
Dave Smith
Right to Rent is ineffective, and unmonitored

At the end of March the Independent Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration (ICIBI) released a report reviewing the “Right to Rent” scheme.  Right to Rent is part of the range of measures introduced by the government to create a “hostile environment” for migrants in the UK. The scheme requires landlords to check that prospective tenants have the right to remain in the UK. Its intention is to prevent undocumented migrants from accessing rented accommodation, and landlords who fail to do so face large fines.  

The scheme, which was not put out for public consultation, has been heavily criticised by NGOs for its heavy handed approach towards migrants, and the knock-on effects that have made it more difficult even for migrants with a legal right to be in the UK to access rented accommodation. 

One of the major criticisms of the inspector's report is that the scheme appears to be largely unmonitored, so even the Home Office has no idea if it is actually an effective deterrent. The ICIBI  concluded that the Right to Rent “has yet to demonstrate its worth as a tool to encourage immigration compliance, with the Home Office failing to coordinate, maximise or even measure effectively its use, while at the same time doing little to address the concerns of stakeholders.”

A fuller critique of the scheme can be found on the Migrant Rights Network website here.