Mystery shopper research was undertaken with letting agents and private landlords to test the potential for discrimination within the private rental sector with the results showing that some clear examples of discriminatory attitudes were found, but there was insufficient evidence to claim any systematic unlawful discrimination as a result of the Scheme.
Lack of landlord’s knowledge
The research identified some gaps in landlords’ understanding of the Right to Rent scheme, particularly among self-managing landlords and those operating outside of a membership body; improved understanding of the Scheme among private landlords could have a significant impact on the implementation of the Scheme and therefore discrimination.
Propertymark has worked hard to distil the complexities of new systems, IDVT and the intro of IDSPs for our members to understand and comply with as well as closely liaising with Home Office officials. The demands are onerous and it is advantageous to have managed lets to support this complicated area. We have produced FAQs to support members that are available to download.
We have worked with the Home Office and UK Border Agency to answer the questions that are widely asked by landlords and letting agents regarding Right to Rent.
The report concludes that the results are not proof of a total absence of discrimination since the mystery shopper research methodology did not capture the final steps of the rental transaction where ‘success’ may have been demonstrated conclusively through the offer of a tenancy. However, given the evidence presented, it is the Home Office’s belief that they pursued the shopper experience to the conclusion of the journey, the findings would not be significantly different.