When you make an application to the UK Border Agency for entry clearance into the United Kingdom, you may be requested to obtain an independent assessment of the number of rooms and occupants for the proposed accommodation.

A property assessment is to ensure the property is safe, in a good state of repair and doesn't pose a health and safety risk. It will also assess whether the property would become overcrowded if any more people were to move in.  If the property meets the required standards then we will issue a confirmation letter which can be used as part of a visa application.

When completing the property inspection the following standards will be assessed:

If the property is safe, in a good state of repair and doesn't pose a health and safety risk;

  • the property is owned or occupied exclusively by the sponsor / sponsor's family (the property is not suitable, if it is shared with members of another family); 
  • the property if rented has a current gas safety certificate (your landlord should provide a copy to you every 12 months);
  • the property has a sufficient number of rooms of adequate sizes and sufficient facilities so that the property  will not become overcrowded if more people were to move in.

How do I arrange an inspection?

Contact the Housing Standards and Improvement Team on 01225 396 444 or email housing@bathnes.gov.uk to arrange an inspection.  We will arrange with you a time for the inspection between 9am - 4pm Monday to Friday.  If you rent your house, the Council will need the name and contact details of your landlord or agent prior to the inspection. The Council must notify your landlord of the inspection.

Will there be a charge for the inspection?

Yes, the current charge is £150 and payment must be made prior to the inspection.  This can be done by debit or credit card (there is a 2.5% charge for credit card payments) over the telephone or payment can be taken at the One Stop Shop, 3-4 Manvers Street, Bath, BA1JG.

Once we have carried out an inspection we cannot refund your payment.

Additional copies of letters will be charged at £12.50.

What to expect during the inspection?

  • You will be visited by an Officer from Housing Services.

  • The officer will need to look round and have access to all parts of the property.  The inspection takes into account such things as the general state of repair, the presence of kitchen and bathroom facilities, heating and ventilation in the house etc.

  • The officer will need to know who occupies the house (name, age, gender) and which rooms they sleep in.

  • The officer will need to see proof of your ownership or tenancy of the property. Evidence can include the Title Deeds, Mortgage Statement, correspondence from your mortgage provider or a current Tenancy Agreement.  If you are not the owner we will require details of who does own the property.

  • The relationship of the person entering the UK to the sponsor and their personal information.

What happens after the inspection?

When the inspection and investigation is completed, we will provide you with a letter, which will include:

  • Your name and the name(s) of the person(s) seeking entry into the UK.

  • The address of the property inspected.

  • Who owns and who occupies the property.

  • Whether the property provided a safe and healthy environment for any potential occupier or visitor at the time of our inspection (free from Category One hazards under the Housing Act 2004 Housing Health and Safety Rating System).

  • Whether the property would be statutorily overcrowded by the addition of the person seeking entry to the UK under the Housing Act 1985.

  • The name of the officer to contact for further information.

Important information for applicant

  • As an applicant, you are responsible for ensuring the letter is received by the appropriate authority within the required timescale in support of the application for immigration.

  • If there are works or actions required to bring the property up to the required standard you will be advised of these requirements. If your property is rented, the Council will contact your landlord to bring the property up to the required standard. Upon completion of works and satisfactory re-inspection the confirmatory letters will be provided. In some circumstances, if the items requiring action or work are considered as serious or injurious, the Local Authority may serve formal Notice to ensure the appropriate works are undertaken to an acceptable level.

  • The Council will not supply a letter unless an inspection has been carried out.  A charge will be made for supplying additional copies of letters.

  • The immigration authorities will not accept letters that are more than 12 weeks old. If your letter expires, a further inspection and fee will be required.  It is therefore very important that you do not request an inspection of your property for immigration purposes until you are ready to submit your full application to the relevant authorities.

  • The Council reserves the right to make a charge for any amendments to the letter or for the supply of copies of the letter at a later date.

  • The Council takes no responsibility for the success or failure of your application to the UK Border Agency and will not contact the agency on your behalf.

 

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