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Landlords & Agents
On 7th March 2011 the Tenancy Deposit Scheme (Scotland) Regulations came into force. These regulations have changed the way in which you need to deal with deposits. Since 2nd July 2012, landlords in receipt of a tenancy deposit are obligated to transfer the deposit to a licensed operator, such as SafeDeposits, who hold hold the deposit until the end of the tenancy. At the end of the tenancy you will need to agree with the tenant how the deposit should be allocated and advise the scheme holding the deposit. The scheme will then repay the deposit in accordance with the agreement, unless there is a dispute between the parties over the deposit allocation.
In these circumstances the scheme will ask for evidence from all parties as to how they feel the deposit should be allocated and the scheme will then carry out an adjudication process and issue a draft report for review by all involved. Once comments have been received there will be a final decision and the scheme will pay out the deposit in accordance with that decision. This means that there will be delays in landlords and tenants getting their deposits back, particularly if there is a dispute.
The Regulations set down a complex timescale. For deposits which you hold before the scheme goes live there are transitional arrangements as set out our guidance document "When to comply". Failure to meet these deadlines means a possible fine of up to three times the deposit if the tenant takes the landlord/agent to court.