When it comes to knowing your rights as a tenant, it can be an incredibly complicated process. You could be bring a tenancy deposit claim and not know it. However, if you have an expert team of solicitors working on your behalf, understanding where you stand has never been easier.
The truth is, most of us don't actually know whether we are owed money by our landlords. This is strange when you think that the amount of compensation owed could quite easily be in the thousands! Yes, thousands! So where do you start when it comes to a tenancy deposit claim?
Well, Firstly, you need to know whether your landlord has protected your deposit adequately according to the law.
So here are the questions you need to ask.
- Was my deposit protected within 30 days of me paying it? If it wasn't this amounts to a late protected deposit. Legally, the landlord is in the wrong, and therefore, the tenant has a case.
- Has your landlord wrongly deducted your tenancy deposit once it was returned? If so, you can bring a claim against your landlord as they are legally required to return your tenancy deposit in full. This is unless you have voided any of the terms of your tenancy. Landlords may look to take money from your deposit if you have broken any of the inventory. This usually includes items, such as mugs, glasses, vases etc. If you owe rent currently, or if you have damaged the property in any way. We would advise taking photos to show exactly how you left the property to protect you legally.
- Has your landlord refused or been unable to return your deposit? As mentioned above, there are some circumstantial reasons that a landlord may look to reduce the amount of money you owed. However, if your landlord refuses to pay your tenancy deposit you should challenge the reasons for doing so and ask for them to be given in full.
Issues often arise when a landlord withholds a tenant’s deposit due to general wear and tear. This happens over time as it would be expected too. For example, when a carpet has worn out due to it being walked on. Any damage caused by repairs which should have been made by the landlord or have been made negligently are also not the fault of the tenant.
When it comes to a tenancy deposit claim, we would advise keeping all correspondence between yourself and your landlord. This highlights that you have taken the necessary steps for resolution.
When your deposit doesn't need to be protected
If you are a lodger or you are living as a student in halls, unfortunately in both of these cases, your tenancy deposit does not need to be protected.
However, if it does need to be protected and it hasn't been you could be owed between 1-3 times your original deposit.
To learn more, visit the link below.