The Tenancy Deposit Protection scheme was introduced in April 2007, but what is it, how does it work and how does it impact landlords and tenants?

What is the Tenancy Deposit Protection Scheme (TSPS)?

A landlord who takes a deposit for an Assured Shorthold Tenancy must place the deposit into one of the government’s three approved tenancy deposit protection schemes, confirming within thirty days in which scheme the deposit has been placed. At the end of the tenancy, the deposit must be returned within ten days.

The scheme was set up to protect a tenant’s deposit, but it offers another benefit. When a landlord feels they have a legitimate right to withhold some or all the deposit, the tenant disputes this. The TDPS offers free adjudication to help the parties resolve the matter.


Why are deposits disputed?

In the year up to March 2021, deposit disputes occurred in 0.76% of cases of tenancy deposits protected in England and Wales. While this percentage may seem low, this still reflects 29,697 disputes, and with the value of deposits in schemes in March 2021 standing at £4.3 million, it becomes clear why there’s a need to secure and manage deposits effectively.

Tenants, agents, and landlords can raise disputes through the deposit protection scheme, but 75% are raised by tenants – a warning to landlords and agents that they should have good property management processes in place. What these processes should cover is illustrated by the reasons for those deposit disputes.

Cleaning: 49%
Damage: 35%
Redecoration: 26%
Gardening: 12%
Rent arrears: 15%


How to avoid tenant deposit disputes

Any landlord or agent who has been involved with a dispute over a deposit will testify to the inconvenience and cost in time and extra administration they cause and why it’s a worthwhile investment to ensure regular oversight of your property.

The reasons for disputes detailed above illustrate that, in many instances, disputes about deposits can be avoided with a robust inventory process in place that captures all the necessary detail regarding the state of the property.

Being able to present a tenant with clear evidence of changes in the property and explain why a deduction is being made will help them understand why you are taking action, making them less likely to contest a deduction.

At No Letting Go, we have invested in a range of property inventories to efficiently manage check-in, check-out, and mid tenancy assessments. Our digital platform, Kaptur, has been designed specifically to assess and detail all the key aspects of a robust property inspection. Using a detailed inventory and photographic evidence, our independent professional experts instil confidence in tenants about the objectivity of their assessments.

Happy tenants help landlords and agents build a good reputation and attract more of the kind of tenants they want, so avoiding disputes through good property management practices is good business and a worthwhile investment.

No Letting Go 

If you want to discuss how our local support or national network at No Letting Go could become your inventory partner, streamline your cost and reduce your workload, then contact No Letting Go today.

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