The property industry has warned Home Secretary Priti Patel that her proposed plans to close the borders to EU citizens and end their right to free movement into and out of the UK will cause ‘unnecessary distress and uncertainty’ for tenants, landlords and letting agents dealing with Right to Rent.
Comments from ARLA Propertymark reflect the chaos that such a decision would have on those dealing with the Right to Rent rules, which currently do not require EU citizens to prove they have permission to live in the UK.
Yesterday it was reported that Patel (pictured, left) wants to impose restrictions on EU citizens immediately after a hard Brexit on 31st October, shifting the position from that of her predecessor, Sajid Javid.
It is reported that she will sideline parliament by introducing the measure through secondary legislation, rather than through the planned Immigration and Social Security Co-Ordination Bill.
Right to Rent
“As recently as April, [the] government committed to continuing with current arrangements around Right to Rent for EU citizens,” says David Cox, Chief Executive of ARLA (right).
“Planned transition is vital in order to allow practical Brexit arrangements for housing and it is essential that sufficient time is allowed for moving to any new system.
“To move the goalposts at this stage will cause unnecessary distress and uncertainty to all those affected. Tenants, landlords and agents must not be left in limbo, arrangements must be clear and transparent for all parties.”
Ed Davey, the Liberal Democrats home affairs spokesperson, highlighted the problems that Patel’s plans would create.
“What would this mean for EU citizens who have made their home in the UK, and who have travelled abroad, when they try to return,” he told The Independent.
“Are the government seriously suggesting an NHS nurse who is an EU national may not be allowed to return to the country if they happen to have been on holiday? It is absurd.”