Tenancy Deposit Protection Launches in Scotland (Video)

The Scottish Government introduces new legislation to protect tenants’ deposits from July 2012.

All landlords and letting agents in Scotland who take a deposit from their tenant must submit it to the scheme within 30 working days of the beginning of the tenancy.
  • Landlords and letting agents in Scotland are required to submit all deposits to an authorised scheme such as my|deposits Scotland
  • It’s important to note that the legislation applies to existing and new deposits
  • There are strict penalties for those that fail to protect tenants’ deposits under the law

Transcription

Tenancy deposit protection is being introduced by the Scottish government after being successfully operated in England and Wales since 2007. The new legislation will provide greater protection to tenants who pay a deposit on private rented accommodation in Scotland.

The legislation requires all landlords and agents to submit to an authorised scheme such as MyDeposits Scotland their tenants' deposits at the beginning of the tenancy. Importantly the legislation relates to existing deposits as well as new deposits and there are penalties for non-compliance.

Until now landlords and letting agents in Scotland have not been required by law to protect the deposits they take from their tenants. From July 2nd all new deposits taken by landlords and agents in Scotland must be submitted to a government-approved scheme such as MyDeposits Scotland, however the deadlines for when new and existing deposits are expected to be lodged do vary so the changes are likely to have a major effect.

MyDeposits Scotland is here to help support landlords and agents and their tenants to comply with these important deposit requirements.

Private rented properties make up a third of all homes in Scotland, and the Scottish government estimates that up to £3.6m worth of tenants' deposits are unfairly withheld by landlords and agents each year, and recent research from MyDeposits Scotland shows that 6 in 10 tenants are not aware that the legislation has come into force.

Recently there was an incident with my landlord - he was going to withhold some of our deposit money, we didn't really know what to do so now it's so reassuring to know that our deposit's going to be looked after and living in Scotland our money will be secure - it's really good for Scotland, it's something that should have happened a long time ago, so now that it's finally happened I think it's a really positive change.

This could present challenges for landlords and agents as they prepare to meet the requirements of the legislation.

As a landlord I know that the new legislation is going to have a major impact on Scotland landlord and agents - they need to be aware of the timeframes that they have to protect the deposit and also giving the prescribed information across to the tenants.

There will be strict penalties of up to three times the deposit amount for those not protecting tenants' deposits under the new law, meaning it's important that all involved are informed about how the scheme will affect them.