Alaine Bradbury, Estates Manager, PAD4U Letting Agents Manchester writes:
The Tenancy deposit scheme was introduced to private landlords and tenants in April 2007. Since then it’s been a legal requirement for all deposits taken to be registered with a Tenancy Deposit Protection Scheme (TDS).
We register our landlords and tenants deposits with The Dispute Service.
Since the TDS was introduced we have protected over 1500 deposits and dealt with many disputes in house. Since April 2007 I have dealt with only 4 disputes that have been referred to the TDS.
Dealing with disputes
We have had to make many changes to the way we carry out inventories and the way we calculate deductions from deposits, so that we fall in line with TDS recommendations. In our experience we have noted the following:
Pre TDS legalisation
If a tenant damaged a bed they would be expected to pay the cost of a replacement bed including delivery and any assembly.
Post TDS legalisation
The age of the bed, the amount of tenants in the property since it was purchased, the quality of the bed and the bed’s life expectancy would be taken into consideration.
Bed damaged to frame and slats costed at £85.00 plus delivery and assembly £35.00 – total £120.00
Bed damaged to frame and slats costed at £45.00 total £45.00
This format for pricing is a general guide and much more information is taken into account when making decisions over any proposed deductions. Other areas that differ greatly are decoration and carpet damage. If the property’s decoration was in good order and it had been recently carpeted before a tenant moved in and damage such as nail holes to walls and iron marks to carpets occurred it would be priced as individual damage.
Carpet damaged by iron mark costed at £90.00 for a replacement
5 x Nail holes to walls costed at £120.00 to re paint wall
Carpet damaged by iron mark costed at £10.00 for area of damage
5 x Nail holes to walls costed at £3.00 per hole £15.00 total to fill, sand and paint
However it’s not all about reductions in costings for landlords the TDS have been known to agree with many costs such as £150.00 towards gardening as the upkeep of the gardens was noted in the tenancy agreement and costs of maintenance such as ‘’call out for ant swarm’’ was awarded to the landlords as pests are classed as a tenant’s responsibility.
TDS legislation is complex but all our staff have been trained to TDS standards and can offer tenants and landlords advise at any point during the tenancy.