The Tenant Passport Scheme is a free to use tenant referencing service managed and delivered by West Lindsey District Council’s Home Choices Team.
The aim of the scheme is to improve tenancy sustainment in the social and private rented sector by providing landlords with information regarding a person's tenancy history. This will assist landlords in determining whether they feel they want that particular applicant for their property and will enable the Council to identify where support can be offered to the landlord or the potential tenant to help them to obtain and then to maintain a property.
Landlords are often reluctant to let their properties to people who they know little about. They fear their property could be damaged, used for illegal purposes or that the rent may not be paid. This can make it difficult and time consuming to find a good property for a tenant and a good tenant for a landlord.
Different landlords have different levels of experience, resources, and ability in tenancy management. For example; whether or not they are locally based; the number and experience of the staff they employ; the number of properties they manage; the financial resources available to them to maintain the property and manage the tenancy. This means that some landlords will be able to successfully maintain and manage tenancies that other landlords cannot. The scheme will enable landlords to consider this as part of the decisions that they make and provide an opportunity to seek support from the Council and other relevant agencies.
Reasons for the scheme
Membership of The Tenant Passport Scheme allows someone to show that they are a suitable tenant quickly and easily. The scheme allows landlords to obtain reliable, accurate and comprehensive information regarding the tenancy history of someone who has approached them for housing. This information is provided to the landlord with a person's written permission. Landlords use the information provided by the scheme to make a risk assessment of whether it would be appropriate for them to take someone as their tenant. The liability for the decision remains with the landlord, the scheme provides them with additional information in order to assist them in their decision making.
The scheme is designed to encourage the following:
- Increase reporting of incidents of anti-social behaviour and poor tenancy management (landlord and tenant)
- To enable tenants to learn from previous behaviours and receive assistance and support to address this.
- To encourage all landlords to seek references from their prospective tenants.
- Give landlords relevant information about the people wanting to rent their properties.