Tenancy Deposit Schemes

The Housing Act 2004 included new arrangements for the protection of all rent deposits paid to landlords at the start of the tenancy.  This affected all new tenancies that began after 6th April 2007.  

 There are three schemes that can be used:

 1. The Deposit Protection Service (DPS), a custodial scheme, which means the landlord pays the tenant's deposit into the scheme.  It is free to use and funded entirely from the interest earned on deposits held.  For more information visit Deposit Protection Service or call 0870 707 1707

 2. Tenancy Deposit Solutions Ltd (TDSL), an insurance based scheme where the landlord keeps the deposit and pays a premium to the insurer. TDSL is a partnership between the National Landlords' Association and Hamilton Fraser Insurance.  For more information visit My Deposit or call 0871 703 0552

 3. The Tenancy Deposit Scheme (TDS), another insurance based scheme, where the landlord keeps the deposit and pays a premium to the insurer.  The scheme builds on a service established in 2003 to provide dispute resolution and complaints handling for the lettings industry.  For more information visit Dispute Service or call 0845 226 7837.

 

From April 6th 2012 the law is changing and landlords need to be aware of the following changes:

 The time limit for protecting a deposit and providing the required information to the tenant will extend to 30 days from 14 days from the date of receipt.

  • If the landlord fails to comply with the legislation, the court will have discretion as to the amount of the penalty payment (between one and three times the amount of the deposit);
  • The penalty will be payable even if the landlord complies with the scheme requirements before the hearing of the tenant's claim;
  • The tenant will be able to apply to the Court for a penalty payment even if the tenancy has ended.
  • If the landlord fails to comply with the legislation within the given time period (30 days) s/he will lose the right to serve a Section 21 Notice unless the deposit has been returned in full (or with agreed deductions) or following the tenant's claim being decided, withdrawn or settled.

 Source: National Landlords Associations

http://www.landlords.org.uk/news-campaigns/news/tenancy-deposit-protection-changes-confirmed-6-april-2012

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