17 August 2018
When you put down a deposit on a property to rent through an assured shorthold tenancy, it has to be held in one of the government-backed tenancy deposit schemes (TDP).
Within 30 days of getting the deposit, your letting agent or landlord must put the deposit in the scheme with either MyDeposits, the Deposit Protection Service, or the Tenancy Deposit Scheme.
Provided you meet the terms of your tenancy agreement, don’t damage the property, and pay your rent and bills, the landlord or letting agent must return your deposit within 10 days of both parties agreeing how much you’ll get back. If you’re in a dispute, then the deposit is protected within the TDP scheme until it is resolved.
But there’s more to protecting deposits than holding them in an approved scheme.
“Serving the correct paperwork on the tenant is just as important as protecting the deposit itself,” says Hannah Glew, manager at Henry Adams Lettings in Horsham. “Without the paperwork in place, the landlord could be potentially liable for legal repercussions.”
Landlords who fail to serve the right documents or correctly register their tenant’s deposit at the right time can be fined up to three times the value of the deposit. In extreme cases they may not even be able to regain possession of their property. So it’s vital for all sides to get the paperwork in order.
“Within appropriate timescales the tenant should receive a copy of the deposit scheme details, prescribed information and a copy of the certificate. This is all in addition to other applicable documents that must be served before a tenancy commences,” advises Hannah.
“The best way for a landlord to ensure the right paperwork is issued at the right time is to appoint a professional agent to do it all on their behalf. Our staff are continuously kept up to date with changes in the lettings industry and with varying case law concerning deposit protection.”
Henry Adams Lettings is a member of one of the government’s schemes and a member of SafeAgent, so clients can be assured they are fully bonded and insured.
“We pride ourselves on providing a high level of success in finding tenants and managing properties,” said Hannah, “but we’re also here to protect our landlords and to make sure tenants get the right service too.”
For more information on any aspect of letting a property, contact our professional and helpful team at Henry Adams Lettings - we have lettings offices across the region waiting for your call.