Deadline looms for tenant deposit scheme

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More than half (52 per cent) of tenants in Scotland say they are aware of tenancy deposit protection (TDP) – a 12 per cent rise since the introduction of the law in July, according to findings from my|deposits Scotland.

The research, which has been conducted to track awareness and attitudes toward TDP in Scotland, also shows that the vast majority (92 per cent) of tenants in Scotland have not discussed the protection of their deposit with their landlord.

TDP legislation was introduced in order to safeguard the tenant’s deposit for the duration of the tenancy and to ensure its quick return even if a dispute arises.

Eddie Hooker, CEO of government-licensed scheme my|deposits Scotland, commented: “It is encouraging that we’ve seen a rise in awareness among tenants in Scotland at this stage and this will only improve with time.

“The legislation was introduced in order to protect the tenant’s money so it’s vital that tenants ask their landlord or letting agent where their deposit has been protected.

“Tenants should also make sure they receive the deposit details from their landlord or letting agent within 30 working days of the beginning of the tenancy.”

Landlords and letting agents in Scotland who took a deposit from their tenant after March 7, 2011, have until November 13 to register it within a government-licensed scheme. Those who fail to protect their tenants’ deposits risk a penalty of up to three times the deposit amount.

However, there are different deadlines for protecting deposits that were taken prior to March 7, 2011. The key trigger dates are available from the my|deposits Scotland Resource Centre http://www.mydepositsscotland.co.uk.

Landlords and letting agents in Scotland can protect their tenants’ deposits now either online at www.mydepositsscotland.co.uk or by calling 0845 634 5400.