Information for Tenants
What is the Tenancy Deposit Scheme?
The Tenancy Deposit Scheme (TDS) protects deposits from being unfairly withheld from tenants and provides free and impartial resolution in disputes over their return.
The Housing Act 2004 requires landlords to protect deposits on Assured Shorthold Tenancies with an authorised scheme. The Dispute Service Ltd. has been authorised by government to operate one such scheme, the Tenancy Deposit Scheme.
How does the Tenancy Deposit Scheme work?
This is a summary of how deposits are protected with the Tenancy Deposit Scheme.
You pay your deposit to your letting agent or landlord.
Within 30 days your letting agent or landlord registers the details of your deposit on the Tenancy Deposit Scheme database to protect the deposit. They must also give you 'prescribed information' - documents showing how your deposit is protected and a leaflet about the Tenancy Deposit Scheme.
Your agent or landlord holds your deposit during the tenancy.
At the end of your tenancy your landlord or agent decides if they want to make deductions from your deposit. If you agree that the deductions are fair, the landlord or agent returns your money to you directly.
If you think the deductions are unfair you should negotiate with the landlord or agent and try to reach an agreement. If no agreement can be reached, you can consider raising a tenancy deposit dispute with the Tenancy Deposit Scheme. We provide free, impartial adjudication to decide how the deposit is divided.
You can find more information about tenancy deposit protection and tenancy deposit disputes in this leaflet, A Guide to Tenancy Deposits, Disputes and Damages.