What Is a Tenancy Deposit?
A tenancy deposit is any money that a landlord requires from a tenant at the start of a tenancy and will return once that agreement or period is up. It acts as security for a landlord if the tenant does not meet their obligations with regards to the agreed tenancy.
There are many examples where this may be the case but some cases may include:
- Paying for damage caused to the property
- Paying for any bills that are unpaid
- Covering any rent that tenants have not paid
What Do The Regulations Mean for Landlords?
By law, landlords must now deposit any tenancy deposit they receive with an approved scheme, such as SafeDeposits. If the landlord received this deposit after 2nd October 2012, it must be transferred to a scheme within 30 working days. However, for those that received a deposit before this date there is a different timescale but it must still be transferred to a scheme such as SafeDeposits.
Once the deposit has been received by SafeDeposits, we will issue the landlord with a Deposit Protection Certificate and certain information that must be given to the tenant. This includes the amount of the deposit and the scheme where it is being held.
Non-Compliance with Tenancy Deposits Regulations
Unless otherwise exempt, a landlord must comply with the regulations within the required time period. If the landlord does not comply, tenants can apply to the Sheriff Court for sanctions to be applied. These usually take the form of financial penalties and can be up to three times the amount of the deposit. This money will be payable to the tenant.