Beginning on the 23rd June, a new Deregulation Act will be applied to landlords with existing tenancies that began before the Tenancy Deposit Protection came into effect in England and Wales on the 7th April, 2007.
The new change in legislation means that an estimated 330,000 tenancy deposits may be affected, requiring landlords to move their deposits into a UK-approved protection scheme and supply their tenants with new information regarding the scheme as required by law. Landlords who fail to do so may be fined.
Eddie Hooker, the chief executive of deposit protection scheme company My Deposit, said, “It’s important that landlords and letting agents are aware of the legislation changes and how it affects them. They must act now and check whether they need to protect any deposits and avoid a fine.”
Provide Your Tenants With Information As Soon As Possible
All tenancies that began on the 6th April 2007 and earlier and have assumed Statutory Periodic Tenancy status are required under the new regulations to have their deposits moved into a protected deposit account by 23rd June. Those rental agreements which became periodic before 6th April 2007 and also had their deposit paid before this date are exempt from the new changes. However, if the landlord pursues a section 21 notice in order to regain possession of the property, the associated deposit must be placed in an approved protection scheme prior to beginning section 21 proceedings.
Mr Hooker offered landlords advice on the new deposit protection scheme. “Our advice is simple: if you still have a deposit that was taken before April 6th 2007 then the belt and braces approach is to protect it and provide your tenant with all the relevant information as soon as possible,” Mr Hooker stated.
According to research performed by My Deposits, up to 48% of landlords find it difficult to stay abreast of changes in legislation. This is compounded by the fact that responsibility for compliance with new legislation, including the new deposit protection laws, falls squarely on landlords’ shoulders.