Legal experts reveal your rights for rental deposits
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Most student renters know the struggle of forking out to pay the often large deposit sum on top of first month’s rent, let alone the even bigger struggle of getting their deposit back at the end of their tenancy. According to a study carried out by SaveTheStudent this year, more than half of all students in the UK rent rooms or houses from private landlords, with many paying an average of £311 for their deposit alone. The same study found that one in five students struggle to get their money back at the end of their tenancy.
Image Credit: Sephelonor on Pixabay.What many students do not know is that there is now a legal requirement for their deposit to be placed in a Tenancy Deposit Protection (TDP) scheme. This scheme is designed to protect and give tenants the possibility to dispute any deposit-related claims at the end of their tenancy. If tenants have not violated the terms of the tenancy agreement (paid all the bills, rent and left the property undamaged), then the scheme will ensure the deposit is returned, even if it involves a third party. This scheme is mandatory for landlords in England and Wales - separate companies are covering Scotland and Northern Ireland - to place any deposit payments into one of the three government-supported companies:
- Deposit Protection Service
- My Deposits
- Tenancy Deposit Scheme
Image Credit: TeroVesalainen on Pixabay.
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- Depending on the scheme, the process of disputing your landlord’s claim on the deposit can vary. These will be outlined in each scheme's terms, but with most, once the dispute is initiated, evidence will be required to support your claim – pictures were taken when moving in, any conversation relating repairs or deposits and so on.
- This information will then be reviewed by an independent adjudicator who will decide how much of the deposit will be returned.
- For more information on the specific process used by your provider, you’ll need to check with the company your landlord registered your deposit with.