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Rogue tenants warned over deposit repayments

From Property Talk Live on July 9, 2014

New figures for the UK’s tenancy deposit protection schemes show that The Deposit Protection Service is not only protecting most deposits on behalf of tenants and landlords but that its’ users experience the lowest percentage of disputes at the end of a tenancy.

In the past twelve months, The DPS has recorded just 8,945 out of 1,105,619 tenancies (0.81%) needing to use its’ adjudication service at the end of a tenancy, compared to 1.02 and 0.87% for the other two providers. The most common reason for a dispute is alleged property damage, with cleaning and redecoration requirements close behind – though there are sometimes more bizarre claims, such as for removal of cockroaches and repairs to a garden after a tenant had dug up a dead pet dog.

At the end of the dispute process, the figures show that The DPS has returned 18.5% of deposits in full to the landlord or letting agent, compared to just 9% by one of its’ competitors and 18.21% for the other. In contrast, 54.7% of The DPS’s disputed deposits have been split between both landlord and tenant and 26.8% have been refunded in full to tenants.

DPS Director Kevin Firth said “Landlords and lettings agents are as worried by bad tenants as tenants are by bad landlords and letting agents – but both sides can be assured that they’re dealing with a completely impartial dispute service should they need to use it. The DPS’s track record is solid – we consider all the evidence provided in the case carefully, and make an un-biased decision, as demonstrated by these latest figures.

“As long as a claim is substantiated with conclusive evidence, tenants as well as landlords should be warned – they can’t expect to default on rent, cause damage to properties or fail to fulfil tenancy conditions and then look for a deposit pay out because our adjudicators work hard to weed out false claims.”

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Source: Property Talk Live