Since the start of the year we've been out and about across Scotland visiting college and university campuses to speak to students about how to keep their deposit safe when they rent.

We know that moving into the private rented sector for the first time can be daunting and there's a lot of new information to get your head around - which is why we want to make deposit protection as easy to understand as possible.

If you rent and paid a deposit to your landlord or letting agent then your landlord legally must transfer your deposit to a tenancy deposit scheme for safekeeping. We hold your deposit in a secure account while you live in the property, to keep it safe and make sure it is available to be returned to you when you move out, if you have met the terms of your tenancy agreement. Then when you move out you should contact us directly to have the deposit repaid.

If the landlord or letting agent wishes to make deductions to your deposit (e.g. for cleaning, damages, etc.) which you don't agree with then we also offer an independent adjudication service to help resolve the dispute. This means that your landlord or letting agent will be invited to submit evidence to support the amount they wish to claim. You will then be invited to view and respond to their evidence. The evidence provided by both parties will be passed to an independent adjudicator who will decide how any disputed amount will be repaid based on the evidence provided.

When you move into a private rented property, you will pay the deposit to the landlord or letting agent as before the schemes were introduced - the landlord then has 30 working days to transfer the deposit to a scheme. You should receive confirmation from the scheme, either by email or post, that your deposit is held by them. If you don't receive a notification from the scheme within approximately six weeks of moving in, we recommend that you either ask the landlord or letting agent for confirmation of where your money is protected, or you can contact the schemes directly and they can search for your deposit on their system.

You should also receive particular key information from the landlord, including which scheme holds your deposit, within 30 working days of moving in.

Tenancy deposit schemes were introduced to provide security and peace of mind to the deposit process. We are independent, impartial and free to use for all parties. If you have any more questions about deposit protection, we have a tenant information leaflet, an FAQ or you can speak to us by contacting our Glasgow-based office.