New guidance is available on how to tackle the problem of disputed rental deposits between landlords and tenants.
For the first time, letting agents, landlords and tenants can find out how adjudicators look at their cases in a joint guide published by all three tenancy deposit protection schemes.
‘Guide to Tenancy Deposits, Disputes and Damages’ is a step-by-step manual detailing the evidence adjudicators seek when considering complaints and the principles that underline their decisions.
The guide is based on the results of 47,000 disputed deposits mediated by the schemes since tenancy deposit laws started in April 2007.
All the scheme managers are keen to point out that they have a standard dispute handling procedure that aims to give landlords and tenants the same decision whoever holds the protected deposited.
One scheme manager explained all three groups follow the same standards for deciding disputes so landlords and tenants have a fair deal regardless of the scheme holding the deposit.
Eddie Hooker, of my|deposits, said: “While we are all competitors, we do not compete on dispute resolution. All schemes follow the same principles and standards when dealing with deposit issues. Landlords and tenants should be able to understand the processes regardless of which scheme they use and expect a fair outcome to their dispute.”
The guidance covers how to avoid disputes, what evidence adjudicators will accept and how to deal with common issues like who is responsible for wear and tear in a property.
Kevin Firth, director of The Deposit Protection Service (The DPS), the custodial scheme, said: “This guide represents a significant benefit for tenants, landlords and letting agents and is another example of how tenancy deposit legislation has acted to improve standards in the lettings industry.
“Anyone can get hold of a copy for free and understand for themselves how disputes are adjudicated, potentially helping them avoid these situations in the future.”
Download a free copy of the guide from www.mydeposits.co.uk/document/mydep_DDD_ADR.pdf