Deposit Not Protected?
What Are Tenancy Deposit Claims?
Have you paid a deposit / bond for a rental property in England or Wales?
Have you lived at that property sometime in the last six years?
Did you rent that property from a private landlord or through a letting agent?
If the answer to those 3 questions is yes, you could be one of those tenants that are sitting on money that is rightfully yours & may not even know about it. The next question you may ask is, why?
Why Could My Landlord Owe Me Money?
Well without getting too heavily into the legal & technical details, tenancy deposit claims exist because of the 2004 housing act.
In simple terms, the Act requires that a landlord or agent who takes a tenancy deposit/bond from a tenant MUST register the tenancy deposit in an authorised scheme within 30 days of receipt of the money.
That’s it, nothing complicated, a simple law that says if you hand your hard-earned money over as a tenancy deposit, it must be kept safe, not under the bed or in the landlord’s bank account, but with an independent third party. To have the deposit not protected is not acceptable!
The important thing to remember here is that a tenancy deposit is your money, even after you hand it over, it stays your money. You only risk losing it to the landlord at the end of the tenancy if you have caused damage or left with arrears.
3 Ways You May Have A Claim
1. The landlord or agent fails to register the deposit in any of the authorised schemes
2. The landlord or agent registers the deposit but more than 30 days after you have paid it
3. The landlord or agent registers the deposit but then removes it & does not re-register it while you are still in the property.
If any of the above happens, the punishment for the landlord is;
Full return of the original deposit PLUS between 1-3x the value of your deposit for each breach (You can read more about Multiple Breach Deposit Claims here)
Deposit Not Protected? How Much Is It Worth?
For example, let’s say you pay £500 as a tenancy deposit & your landlord fails to register the money you would be owed your £500 back plus a further £500 – £1500 for each breach, the average claim contains two breaches & the average deposit in the UK is £1100.
Let us take the average case… £1100 deposit not protected + 2 breaches, multiply the breaches by 2, which is the average tenancy deposit compensation calculation. Grand total = £5500
Of course, the actual value of your claim will be based on a number of factors, but you can see how it can quickly mount up, in the tenant’s favour!
2 Big Questions Tenants Ask About Deposit Claims
One popular question is; “My landlord didn’t protect my deposit, but I still live in the property, will my landlord try and kick me out if I try and take them to court?”
The likelihood is, your landlord won’t be happy and nobody wants to lose their home. But don’t worry, claims can be backdated for up to 6 years from the date you moved out. That’s right, that horrible landlord who decided to keep your £700 deposit unfairly, well you may well have given up on seeing that money ever again, until now!
The second most popular question we get asked is; “I have no idea if my deposit was protected or whether it was protected late, how do I find out?”
80% of the tenants we help are totally unsure if their deposit was protected, and most of them didn’t even know this law existed! The good news is that we will find out for you completely free of charge and often within 24 hours.
“Is this service confidential? Will My landlord find out?”
Absolutely! You’ll be informed if your tenancy deposit was not protected or if it was and your landlord will not be informed, which means you can even check your current property if you wish.
Nearly £515 Million Worth of Tenancy Deposits Is Not Protected!
Around 40% of the tenants who contact us thinking that their tenancy deposit was protected, find out it wasn’t!
“It’s a big letting agency, they know what they’re doing and they must have protected my deposit!”
Please don’t assume, all companies make mistakes and more often than not, we find it is the ones you least expect!
“It says my tenancy deposit will be protected in my tenancy agreement”
Every single tenancy agreement will likely have that written in them, it is a legal requirement and probably included in the template… and remember, that tenancy agreement template was written before you even paid your deposit or expressed an interest. All they do is change the name and address details and ask you to sign it!
A report from the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) says that these landlords are sitting on over £514 million of tenancy deposits that should be protected by an official third party service.
The fact is most tenants do not know.
Why wouldn’t you find out?
Its fast, free, confidential & no obligation just get in touch using the contact form below or you can message us on Facebook.