Keeping your deposit safe

Keeping your deposit safe

Are you starting a new tenancy with a private landlord or agent?

From now on, when you pay a deposit, your landlord or agent must protect it using a government authorised tenancy deposit scheme.

Make sure you ask your landlord about it

The Government wants to make sure your tenancy deposit is protected so that:

Moving in

At the beginning of a new tenancy agreement, pay your deposit to your landlord or agent as usual. Within 14 days, the landlord or agent is required to give you details about how your deposit is protected including:

Safeguarding your deposit

You have a responsibility to return the property in the same condition that it was let to you, allowing for fair wear and tear.

So it is a good idea to make sure that when you sign your tenancy agreement, you:

Who are the organisations running the schemes?

The three Tenancy Deposit Schemes are:

Tenancy Deposit Solutions Ltd
www.mydeposits.co.uk
info@mydeposits.co.uk

The Tenancy Deposit Scheme
www.tds.gb.com
0845 226 7837

The Deposit Protection Service
www.depositprotection.com 0870 707 1 707

What should you do if your landlord or agent hasn't protected your deposit?

You can apply to your local county court. The court can order the landlord or agent to either repay the deposit to you or protect it in a scheme. If your landlord or agent has not protected your deposit, they will be ordered to repay three times the amount of the deposit to you.

Moving out

At the end of the tenancy, check whether you are leaving the property and its contents in the condition in which it was let to you allowing for fair wear and tear and check that you have paid your rent and any other expenses. Then agree with your landlord or agent how much of the deposit should be returned to you. Within 10 days you should have received the agreed amount of the deposit.

Resolving disputes

When you move out, if you and your landlord or agent can't agree how much of your deposit should be returned, there will be a free service offered by the scheme protecting your deposit to help resolve your dispute. Check the information your landlord or agent gave you at the beginning of your tenancy for details.

Your landlord cannot give notice that he is repossessing the property at the end of the tenancy until he has protected the deposit and told you how it is protected.

Want to find out more?

For advice visit www.direct.gov.uk/tenancydeposit or telephone the leaflet line on 0845 609 0696

Alternatively contact the following organisations:

Shelter
FREE* housing advice helpline
0808 800 4444 (open 8am to midnight 7 days a week) www.shelter.org.uk/advice * some mobile phone numbers may charge for calls to this number

Citizens Advice
Listed in the phone book and www.citizensadvice.org.uk

National Union of Students
www.nusonline.co.uk/info/housing
Visit your student advice centre or students' union for more information.