Ask Tenants blog
Tenancy deposit deductions are a key concern for private tenants when they move home. A study by the leading tenant’s website, The Tenants Voice, revealed that while 70% of deposits are returned in full, 17% are returned in part and 13% not returned at all. The survey of more than 2,000 private tenants also found that 35% of respondents had previously lost some or all of their tenancy deposit.
30.2% of tenants rating their rental property on Asktenants.co.uk felt that the deposit refund process was “unfair”. However, only 1% of tenants disputed the proposed tenancy deposit deductions. These statistics show that only a small percentage of affected tenants find time and energy to dispute tenancy deposit deductions. The percentage is likely to be even lower for smaller tenancy deposit deductions where tenants may feel it is simply not worth the hassle.
Tenants need to be well prepared to challenge the tenancy deposit deductions, but when you move a house a lot is going on, a dispute is the last thing a tenant wants to deal with.
If you are an assured short-hold tenant (most private renters have this type of tenancy) your tenancy deposit should usually be refunded within 10 days from the check-out date. If a landlord wants to make a deduction, they should propose such deduction to the tenant explaining the reasons and backing them up with supporting evidence in the form of photos, official document references etc. The landlord cannot simply retain a tenancy deposit without any substantial explanation and evidence. If the tenant disagrees with the nature of the proposed deduction or believes that the price of such is overinflated, he can start a dispute. The undisputed part of the deposit is refunded and the disputed amount is held by a deposit protection scheme.
If the tenant disputes the tenancy deposit deductions, the adjudicator will work on resolving the dispute. The adjudicator will request all relevant documents and other evidence from each party. Here is where as a tenant you take out your nicely organized folder and provide your proof. A well-prepared response by the tenant goes a long way to get the dispute resolved in his favor. If you are a tenant who feels that tenancy deposit deductions proposed by the landlord are unfair and excessive but do not have time, expertise and energy to deal with it, you can get a professional to do it for you.
TenancyGuru is experts in this area and works on a ‘No win, No fee’ basis. Therefore, tenants have nothing to lose. Their team will minimize every proposed tenancy deposit deduction & manage the case through all the necessary stages required for the successful resolution of the deposit dispute.
TenancyGuru works with the deposits protected by all authorized deposit protection schemes in the UK:
One of the London-based tenants was informed that the landlord wanted to deduct £1,500 from their tenancy deposit of £3500. While the reason provided by the landlord (stains on the carpet) was genuine, the amount of tenancy deposit deduction seemed excessive. The tenant was busy with relocating and didn’t know how to face the deductions from a well-known letting agent, so they approached TenancyGuru for assistance. They started working on the case the next day and swiftly completed the below tasks:
- Estimated the scope of damage and fair wear and tear allowed for affected location within the property. Since the stain was in the hallway, increased fair wear and tear should be allowed, as it represents the high traffic area in the rented property.
- Evaluated allowed depreciation of the carpet based on the useful life of the carpet and projected lifespan of the item in the rented property.
- Challenged the origin of the carpet and found the cheapest alternative by getting multiple quotes and finding the cheapest supplier.
- Adjusted the evidence & arguments to the dispute guidance suitable for by the tenancy deposit scheme where the deposit was held.
- TenancyGuru submitted all evidence & arguments to the adjudicator on tenants’ behalf & dealt with forthcoming follow-ups from counterparts involved.
The result was that the tenancy deposit deductions were reduced by £1,200. Tenant kept 75% of deduction reduction (£900) while TenancyGuru kept the remaining 25% as fees. The entire process was completed in 45 days and was fully managed by the company.
The fee of 25% applies to the amount by which Initial deposit deductions are reduced. Example: Assume that your tenancy deposit is £2,500 of which the landlord wants to deduct £1,000. If TenancyGuru can reduce the deductions to £400, they will charge 25% of £600 (£1,000 – £400) they reduced by, which amounts to £150. You as a tenant will keep remaining £450. If they are unable to reduce the deductions, you as a tenant have nothing to pay. TenancyGuru had experience working with tenancy deposits as small as £500 to as large as £60,000. They will deal with any operational fees, which may occur at no cost to tenants.
Below are some of the key stats provided by TenancyGuru :
- On average, at the end of the tenancy, Landlords and Agents tried to retain 58.1% of our clients’ tenancy deposits.
- On average, TenancyGuru recovered 72% of the deductions that were initially proposed by the Agent or Landlord.
Clients mostly (~50%) based in London. Letting Agents against whom TenancyGuru won the disputes in 2019: Knight Frank, Foxtons, Johns & Co, Madley Properties and others. The reviews can be found on our Trustpilot page rates. Trustpilot ranks the service as “excellent”.
If you wish to use their services, they will need some basic information like your tenancy agreement and Check-In/Check-out report. They will never ask for any financial or personal information not related to your tenancy. You can contact them on email firstname.lastname@example.org or online https://tenancyguru.co.uk/contact/ and they can start working on your case the next day.
To summarise, the service provided by Tenancyguru is suitable for tenants who want to minimize their tenancy deposit deductions or are simply too busy to go through the dispute resolution process on their own. They do 100% of the work for tenants and take 25% of the amount they save.
Disclaimer: This post has been sponsored by tenancyguru.co.uk. As always, we did the research around tenancy deposit deductions and spoke to their representative; tenancyguru.co.uk has provided the information about the service they offer. This article must not be treated as legal advice by Asktenants.co.uk. Asktenants.co.uk is not responsible for quality of service and results obtained by using services offered by tenancyguru.co.uk.