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The Tenancy Deposit Scheme explained

publication date: Apr 22, 2006
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Well over two thirds of all landlords surveyed this quarter for the Tenancy Deposit Scheme are now aware that legislation comes into force this autumn. The new legislation is designed to safeguard tenants deposit money and provide adjudication for deposit disputes. The number of landlords who are fully aware of the details of the legislation has risen sharply in just three months, from 16% to 25%.

This is shown in the latest research for The Dispute Service, which operates the existing Tenancy Deposit Scheme, carried out during March and published today.

Under the Housing Act 2004, in less than six months time, the use of a tenancy deposit scheme will be mandatory for all landlords. If a rented property falls within the provisions of the Housing Act - effectively, if the rental value is less than £25,000 a year - landlords and their agents will have to be members of a recognised Tenancy Deposit Scheme. Now, the latest research shows that only a quarter of all landlords remain completely unaware of the compliance that will be required of them from October 1st this year. In addition to a quarter of all landlords understanding the detail of the legislation, close to half of the remaining landlords, 45.2%, are aware that there is an autumn deadline.

Lawrence Greenberg, Chief Executive of the Tenancy Deposit Scheme, welcomed the latest findings. “With six months still to go we are winning the education battle,” he said.

“This time last year, we were not expecting to have been able to get so far with the information campaign and to have been able to get the message across to so many landlords in the private rented sector.” Lawrence Greenberg also pointed out that it is very evident that letting agents understand the benefits of the Tenancy Deposit Scheme.

“The system for Alternative Dispute Resolution which helps to do away with protracted argument and court procedures removes unresolvable problems from the agent’s desk and puts them where they belong, with an experienced, independent adjudicator.”

The Tenancy Deposit Scheme came onstream two years ago next month, with the backing of the professional bodies active in the private rented sector: ARLA, the Association of Residential Letting Agents, the NAEA, the National Association of Estate Agents and the RICS, the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. It already has well in excess of 1,000 active letting offices in the scheme.

More information for landlords, tenants and letting agents is available on or on 0845 226 7873