Keeping it local

From today, you'll be able to contact The LPS Scotland using our new standard rate telephone number, 0330 303 0031.

Following feedback from our customers, we know that many of you get in touch via mobile. Our new 033 number is inclusive in most landline and mobile minute bundles, so you can now use these to contact us!

For other ways to contact us, view our Help page.

We’re open this Saturday!

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 On Saturday, August 31, we’re running a trial weekend call service.

We want to know if it’s more convenient for you, so we’ve arranged to open the lines from 9am to midday.

T: 0844 472 6666

It’s a one-off – but if it proves popular and productive then we’ll see if we can make it business as usual.

Let us know if you use the service and why not tweet your thoughts to @LPS_Scotland

Kevin Firth, Director

The Letting Protection Service Scotland

We do not spam. Stay informed.

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WE know how irritating spam emails are. We do not send junk email.

So when we do email it’s because there’s a specific and good reason. Most often it’s because we’ve been asked for something like an ID reminder. Occasionally we need to tell you about service updates or give security advice.

Sometimes these emails can be mistaken for junk by email providers. Make sure you get the information you need by adding us to your “Safe Senders” list. Some details on that are below.

It’s important you see our emails, and they don’t just end up in Junk. When that happens it’s frustrating for you. From this end we can’t see it’s occurred, and that you haven’t received the information you need.

What to do

The best thing you could do is add our domain address @lettingprotectionscotland.co.uk to your “safe senders” list. Each provider has its own process for adding to Safe Senders.

Some providers – BT and Yahoo for example – require you to set up a “Filter” which keeps our emails out of Junk. For an official guide to that click here.

For convenience, click here for our domain address to appear in an email.

Thanks

The LPS  Scotland Team

“Support deposit protection laws”

Green Party MSP Patrick Harvie has led debates in the Scottish Parliament on deposit protection. Here – in his own words – he tells his personal story, explaining why he is so passionate about laws which protect tenants.

Patrick Harvie MSP  

Patrick Harvie MSP

 

Other politicians who supported the legislation will share that disappointment, but more to the point so will the tenants left unprotected, and the responsible landlords who have made the effort to comply.I was deeply disappointed by the recent confirmation that legislation designed to protect tenants’ deposits has seen only around half of deposits lodged with an approved scheme.

Anyone who has rented (as I did for around ten years) knows that causing damage to the landlord’s property will risk losing their deposit. But the reality is that far too many people find that they run that same risk even when no damage is caused.

Landlords have a perfect right to make deposits a condition for taking on a new tenant, but a minority of landlords seem to consider the extra month or two’s rent as simply a perk of the trade.

Even making it difficult or time consuming to get a deposit repaid can cause real problems; few people who find themselves having to move to a new private rented home can afford to stump up another deposit while waiting months to get their old one back.

So it’s in the interests of tenants and responsible landlords alike that deposits should be kept safe and paid back to the tenant in good time.

“Abusive behaviour”

During my years in the private rented sector, I saw really good practice from some landlords, but also exploitative and abusive behaviour from others. On one occasion, when I was harassed out of a flat by a particularly bad landlord, I was lucky enough to be able to fall back on my family for a place to go.

Not everyone has that support, and if my circumstances had been different I could easily have found myself not only homeless but being pursued for unfair debts.

It’s not always easy to tell the difference between decent and dodgy landlords or letting agents before you sign a lease, so tenants need to know that their rights are clear in the law, and that there is a simple and straightforward way of challenging bad practice.

In a recent debate at Holyrood I called on the Government to explain how they intend to enforce the law on deposits, and what else can be done to give tenants a bit more security and protection from exploitation.

Later this year we’re expecting to see another Housing Bill from the Government, to regulate letting agents. If we’re seeing 90% compliance with deposit schemes by then, all well and good. If we’re still closer to 50%, there’s clearly a need for stronger measures to ensure that the new system doesn’t just give protection on paper, but that it really changes practice throughout the sector.

May 15 – what it means to you

Some deadlines can be ignored. Most cannot. The Letting Protection Service Scotland’ tells you why May 15 is one of those you have to put in your diary.

Nine months in and we are just two weeks away from the final deposit protection deadline for Scotland: May 15, 2013.

OK, so what does that date really mean?

In a nutshell, all qualifying deposits – including those taken before March 7, 2011 – have to be protected by then.

If you are a landlord in Scotland holding a deposit where the tenancy started on March 7, 2011 or before, the law has exempted you from deposit protection laws (provided that the tenancy was not renewed between October 2, 2012 and April 11, 2013). However, that honeymoon period ends on May 15.

So… have you got any deposits which you took before March 7, 2011? If so you must lodge them with an approved protection scheme, and give your tenants the relevant Regulation 42 information.

You can find a link to a template for that information here.

I know there are still landlords and agents who are confused by the legislation; please feel free to contact us for guidance.

For everyone who has taken a deposit after March 7, 2011, it’s business as usual: you have to register any new deposit within 30 days of receiving it.

Remember: failure to lodge a deposit with an approved scheme or failure to give the required Regulation 42 information to your tenant could result in compensation of up to three times the deposit being paid by you to your tenant AND having to lodge the deposit with a scheme.

The Letting Protection Service Scotland is an independent deposit protection scheme, and the most experienced of its type in the UK.  We were also the first scheme to be approved by the Scottish Government.

Visit us here.

Remember, the May 15 deadline is retrospective and therefore applies to all  existing relevant tenancies.

Are you a tenant?

If your deposit has been protected you should have received confirmation from your landlord and from the relevant scheme.

If you think your deposit should have been protected the first thing to do is speak to your landlord or agent and find out what they have done or are planning to do about it.  If they claim to have protected it with us you can check here.

For more information on deposit protection in Scotland, visit http://www.lettingprotectionscotland.com/tenant-info

Contact us:  We want to help.

Shona arrives in Scotland

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WE’RE delighted to announce Shona, arriving on April 1 – our virtual service agent.

Shona exists to help LPS Scotland users get the most out of our service. She will sit patiently on the Help page of LPS Scotland, waiting for you to ask anything you like about the service.

Once you’ve typed your question in Shona will use the latest artificial intelligence to give you the most helpful answer.

If you need further information Shona will offer you more options or direct you to our online contact form. That form will be sent to our Operations team who’ll respond as quickly as possible.

The Shona service is the twin to “Emma,” used by our sister service The DPS in England and Wales since March 2011.

Since Emma’s launch she has been used nearly 180,000 times and around 9/10 questions are answered on-the-spot.

So… our re-vamped Help page will have:

Ask Shona
Our all-new virtual agent, on hand to answer all your LPS Scotland questions.

Frequently Asked Questions
Our extensive list of FAQs are an alternative to Ask Shona and address 90% of all enquiries. If the answer to your question isn’t there you’ll be directed to an online form which is sent directly to our Operations team.

Have a go, and let us know what you think!

Landlords: Which of these expensive mistakes do you make?

Our workshops try to make it none!

 

Sometimes landlords deserve the deposit from a property, or a share of it. But when the new deposit protection laws came in, claiming it became a more formal process to make sure unscrupulous landlords weren’t just pocketing cash that legally belongs to their tenant.

Any new process  takes a little getting used to. That’s why our senior team will be touring Scotland in March, conducting FREE workshops on how best to claim any money you believe you’re owed.

Deciding exactly how much should be awarded when the facts are disputed is the responsibility of our legally-trained Alternative Dispute Resolution team. They successfully work their way through over 6,000 cases each year.

Our chief adjudicator, Alex Coghlan-Forbes, will be at the seminars explaining the simple ways to avoid footing the bill when you shouldn’t have to.

The seminars are helpful, and free. To register your interest click here.

In the meantime – to help out – here’s our quick list of common landlord mistakes:

#1 No tenancy agreement.  The deposit claim is based on the contract between the parties.  There is no “standard” tenancy contract, so the first thing the adjudicator has to look at is what was agreed.  If the adjudicator can’t see what the tenant agreed to, how can they say it was a breach of an agreement?

Top Tip: Get it in writing.

#2 No/insufficient check in evidence.  Has your antique cabinet lost a leg since you saw it last? If it was checked by an independent inventory clerk at the start of the tenancy we’re in a much better position to support your claim.

 Top Tip: Have an independent inventory taken.

 #3 Check out evidence not gathered quickly enough. We see check-out reports compiled over a month after the end of the tenancy.  Landlords then complain the property was “dusty” or the garden “overgrown”.  Is that surprising?

 Top Tip: With check-outs it’s the sooner the better.

 #4 Work starting work before check-out evidence gathered.  This can cast doubt as to whether any damage was present when the tenant left, or whether the contractor may have caused the issue.

 Top Tip: Get evidence before it’s destroyed.

 Interested in coming to one of our FREE seminars? Click here.

Deposit disputed... Who decides?

THERE once was a landlady who – to prove her former tenants had left a wooden floor in a filthy state – took off her shoes and dared to walk across it. How do we know?

We were sent the “before” and “after” pictures of the soles of her feet.

Now that deposits must be protected, what do you do if a tenancy comes to an end but you and the tenant/landlord cannot agree how it should be distributed?

Not everyone applies such imaginative evidence gathering as the landlady who removed her shoes. But she did prove a point:

Where there is a dispute, evidence is king.

Before the Tenancy Deposit Schemes (Scotland) Regulations came into force the only route for warring landlord and tenant was a court of law.

Part of the reason for the new regulations was to create an Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) service, free of charge for tenants and landlords. The ADR service provides impartial, qualified adjudicators who will examine evidence from both sides and decide how the deposit should be divided.

Being free and completely independent means they’re not biased towards landlords or tenants. The only thing they’re interested in is evidence.

Fair, independent and impartial

If you feel you may need to use the ADR service then you’ll find our Guide to Tenancy Deposits, Disputes and Damages helpful as a useful starting point.

Meanwhile, here are the five key things to remember if you do use the service:

  • Both sides will have their say.
  • The deposit belongs to the tenant. The landlord must prove a legitimate claim on the money.
  • The ADR adjudicator is only interested in evidence. If a claim is made without evidence it is likely the claim will fail.
  • The importance of a properly completed inventory (preferably independent) cannot be underestimated.
  • In using the service, both sides agree to be bound by the decision.

No one wants disagreements over deposits. However, it’s inevitable that they will happen and when they do occur it’s very often because landlords and tenants haven’t spoken for a while; so it might be a good idea to pick up the phone or start tapping out an email before it gets to that point.

But it’s good to know – if dispute is unavoidable – that a free, legal alternative to court proceedings is there for you.

If you have any questions on our ADR service our FAQ page might have the answers for you.

We’ll also be rolling out a series of ADR workshops across Scotland, so please keep an eye on the website for more details.

By the way, if you want to see the foot look below!

Merry Christmas from The LPS Scotland!

It’s impossible to miss that Christmas is just around the corner. However, as you know you can never fully switch off from your responsibilities as a landlord, whether that’s making sure your property is kept in good condition over the festive period, completing deposit disputes or even taking on new tenants. There are a couple of things you can do to make sure your properties are in order, ensuring the safety of your tenants and hopefully a stress-free Christmas for you.

Are your tenants leaving the property over Christmas?

Our adjudication team receives a lot of claims following severe winter weather. The majority are usually the result of burst or frozen pipes at houses where tenants had left the property to spend Christmas with their family elsewhere.

To avoid the stress and expense this can cause, contact your tenants to see if they’re going away for the festive season, to ensure that the proper measures are taken to avoid this kind of damage.

Be aware of evidence submission deadlines

If you’ve currently got a deposit in dispute then don’t forget to stick to your evidence submission deadlines. The LPS Scotland is not extending any deadlines but is making allowances for bank holidays so if you’re concerned about a deadline then get in touch so we can see what we can do for you.

Our Christmas opening hours

If you’re taking on new tenants over Christmas or the New Year you can submit deposits at any time online. If you need assistance our contact centre opening hours are:

Monday 24th – 8:30am – 4:00pm

Tuesday 25th – CLOSED 

Wednesday 26th – CLOSED 

Thursday 27th – 8:30am – 5:30pm

Friday 28th – 8:30am – 5:30pm

Monday 31st – 8:30am – 4:00pm

Tuesday 1st – CLOSED

You can also get in touch via online form or visit our FAQ page.

Finally, a very merry Christmas to you from everyone at The LPS Scotland!

So you’ve protected your tenant’s deposit – what next?

We’re pleased to have seen so many landlords and letting agents protecting their tenant’s deposits in line with the legislation. If you've recently protected your tenant’s deposit, here are some of the key things to consider next: 1)    The Tenancy Deposit Schemes (Scotland) Regulations require certain information to be provided to the tenant within 30 working days of the start of the tenancy. To make this simple, we have developed an Information Template which you can download, fill in and pass to the tenant. Once filled in, this template contains all of the information you need to give the tenant to comply with this part of the legislation.

2)    When the time comes for the tenant to leave the property either you or the tenant can initiate the deposit repayment process. If you wish to start the process simply visit our website and log into your account, selecting ‘Request a Repayment’. The onscreen guidance will take you through the process and the tenant will be notified by us that they need to respond to the claim.

3)    Repayment IDs are given to you and the tenant when a deposit submission payment has cleared and both repayment IDs must be provided when a deposit repayment request is submitted. Remember to keep your repayment ID safe – it’s unique to you like a PIN number and shouldn’t be shared with your tenant as they will have their own. The repayment ID grants authorisation from both parties to repay the deposit, so make sure you keep it confidential.

4)    If you and the tenant cannot agree on the amount of deposit to be repaid, then you will have the option to use our free Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) service. Using this service will provide both you and the tenant the opportunity to submit evidence to back up your claim to our independent adjudicators. They will then make a decision based on this evidence how much deposit should be repaid to each party. You can read more about this service here.

More information about the deposit repayment process can be found in our FAQ pages

Deadline day

If you’re a landlord, it is your responsibility to ensure your tenant’s deposit is protected in a government approved scheme. The Tenancy Deposit Schemes (Scotland) Regulations state that any deposit received before the 2nd October 2012 (but on or after the 7th March 2011) must be protected by the 13th November 2012.

If you use a letting agent to help manage your properties, make sure you check that they are complying with the regulations and protecting the deposits. If a deposit is not protected the tenant can apply to the courts for up to three times the deposit amount – so it’s important to make sure this deadline is met!

If you are unsure when your tenant’s deposit needs to be protected, you can use our compliance calculator which will work it out for you.

If you would like to speak to someone about deposit protection and the effect of the regulations, our Regional Manager Anthony Cox is available to discuss the regulations, your responsibilities and our scheme. For more information, take a look at our website and FAQ pages.

Anthony’s tour de Scotland part 2

In part 2 of Anthony’s blog, he runs through some of the common questions asked during our free drop in sessions: For anyone that wasn’t able to visit us during one of our free drop in sessions, we thought it would be useful to list the answers to some of the most common questions we are asked. If you have any questions that aren’t answered here or you just want to find out more about us or the effect of the Tenancy Deposit Schemes (Scotland) Regulations 2011 (the legislation), you can always check out our FAQ pages, or email me.

 

Q. Your service is free - what’s the catch?

A. The legislation specifies that all schemes must operate a free to use service for landlords, agents and tenants: there isn’t a catch!  Interest earned on the protected deposits pays for the running costs of the scheme.

 

Q. I have a portfolio of properties for which I receive the interest from the deposit funds.  Will you pay me interest as otherwise this system is a cost to me?

A. The legislation ordered deposit protection schemes to be custodial only, which means we hold your tenant’s deposit for you. We are unable to pay the interest to you at this time.

 

Q. Why aren’t you affiliated with any landlord or tenant associations?

A.  We welcome members who are affiliated to a landlord or tenant association, but we pride ourselves on offering a completely independent and impartial service open to all.

 

Q. Will you come and visit my property should there be a dispute between myself and my tenant?

A.  This is not possible. The landlord and tenant must supply comprehensive relevant evidence to back up their claim or defence in the event of a dispute.  The adjudicators will never visit a property and it is unlikely that they will contact you to question your evidence submission.   We welcome all evidence submitted to us, and the landlady who took a photo of her bare feet to demonstrate how the hard floor in her apartment had not been cleaned was certainly innovative....

 

Q. I need the deposits for cash flow.  I just had to pay for a new boiler in the property and now can’t afford to lodge the deposit.

A. The deposit was never yours to use; the money belongs to the tenant until the end of the tenancy (when the landlord or letting agent may make a claim for some or all of it, depending on the terms of the lease), and provided that, in the above case, they can prove that the boiler had to be replaced because of the tenant’s actions. As such you will still need to protect the deposit to comply with the new legislation; failure to do so may result in you paying compensation of up to three times the deposit amount to your tenant.

 

Q. How is the system policed? 

A. The legislation, together with the terms and conditions of the LPS Scotland, provide ways for information to be provided between landlord and tenant, and for any disputes to be resolved.  For example, tenants may apply to the courts for up to three times their deposit amount should their agent or landlord fail to lodge their deposit on time and supply them with the required information (Regulation 42). Such an application may be made up to three months after the tenancy has ended.

 

Q. You have a sample template on your website for me to give to my tenant covering the required information they need to know.  Should I be providing my tenant with anything else to comply with the legislation?  

A. The required information template (Regulation 42) contains everything the tenant needs to be aware of according to the legislation. When funds are lodged against your property’s deposit we also supply you and your tenant with confirmation that the deposit is protected.

 

Q. If my tenant doesn’t pay the last month’s rent, how do I claim from the deposit?

A. At the end of the tenancy you can apply to your deposit protection scheme to retain some or all of the deposit, as long as the lease states that you can recover non-payment of the rent from the deposit. You can find out further information about this process on our website.

 

Q. What experience do you have in understanding the issues that landlords and letting agents in Scotland face?

A. I have been in the residential property industry for 25 years in Scotland.  I have faced the problems that you face and know your concerns.  Our system has been set up to help you, not only with administration but also to help alleviate your tenants’ concerns.

 

Anthony operates from The LPS Scotland’s Edinburgh office. 

 

 

Anthony’s tour de Scotland

Today we have a blog from Anthony Cox, The LPS Scotland’s Regional Manager: I have been adding many miles to my car lately; travelling to all parts of Scotland hosting free drop in sessions; helping landlords and agents become familiar with the Tenancy Deposit Schemes (Scotland) Regulations and our scheme.  The sessions have been well attended and it’s been great to meet so many of our customers and to answer your questions.  It is wonderful to watch people’s reactions to the explanation of the effect of the legislation - mostly glum to begin with (good landlords feel that the legislation has been landed on them and it is through the actions of a few bad ones that this system has been implemented) but within minutes they understand that the system is not as onerous as they expected, so they leave smiling!

I have been visiting landlords and letting agents on a one to one basis, geographically ranging from Fraserburgh and Aberdeen to Dumfries and Kelso, Oban and many places in between.

We are the only provider in Scotland with experience of running a custodial scheme, experience that counts when it’s time to return funds at the end of the tenancy - our sister company The DPS processes over 4000 transactions daily in England and Wales.  At one presentation in Aberdeen a letting agent explained that they had processed their first repayment with us and found it so much easier than they expected! We realise that deposit protection is a big change for landlords and letting agents, which is why we make it as simple as possible to administer.

Along the way I’ve heard some amusing and some frightening stories from the landlords and letting agents I have met. One landlord told me their tenant wanted to light a log burning stove, so put a log in the kitchen sink and covered it with petrol before carrying through the house.  Half the house fell down and the poor tenant was in hospital for six months.

In my next blog post I’ll be answering some of the common questions landlords and letting agents have been asking me. In the meantime, I’d like to know your thoughts on the following questions:

  • What did you think about the legislation before it came into force and what, now you are familiar with it, are your thoughts today?
  • How easy has it been for you to adjust to paying the deposit into a scheme rather than into a deposit account held and managed by you?
  • How can you see the legislation helping landlords and how will they help tenants?
  • Why did you chose The LPS Scotland – or indeed, why didn’t you?

All information will be anonymous so please don’t include property addresses!

You can email me your thoughts: Anthony.Cox@lettingprotectionscotland.com

 

Do you know your deadline for protecting your tenant’s deposit?

On the 2nd October 2012, the second phase of timings for complying with The Tenancy Deposit Schemes (Scotland) Regulations kicks in. This means that any deposits received on or after the 2nd October 2012 need to be protected in a government approved scheme within 30 working days of the start of the tenancy.

Any deposits received before the 2nd October (but on or after the 7th March 2011) need to be protected in that way by the 13th November 2012.

If you have a deposit which you received from a tenant before the 7th March 2011 you need to protect it within 30 days of the tenancy renewal date (if this is after 12th November 2012), or if this doesn’t apply, by the 14th May 2013.

We know this can sound quite confusing, so if you’re not sure when you need to protect your tenant’s deposit, visit our website where we have a Timescales for Compliance Calculator which will help to work out the date for you! All you need is the date you received (or will receive) the deposit and a tenancy renewal date if you have one.

If you would like to find out more about tenancy deposit protection in Scotland and how it affects you, we have lots of information for landlords and letting agents on our website, or you can check out our FAQ pages.

Our second prize draw winner is announced!

A lucky letting agent from Crieff is the second of our prize draw winners to win a hospitality package to the William Hill Ayr Gold Cup Opening Day. Dale and Robert Hobbs of Hobbs Lettings were automatically entered into the prize draw when they submitted a deposit to The LPS Scotland. The prize allows them to treat five of their colleagues, family members or friends to a five-star day out at the Ayr Cup on 20th September 2012.

We’re delighted to welcome Hobbs Lettings as customers and we hope that they have a fantastic day out at the races.

Upcoming Events

Aberdeen Seminar and Drinks Reception, 18th September 2012 Following previous events in Edinburgh and Glasgow, we’re holding a seminar and drinks reception in Aberdeen on the 18th September 2012.

During the seminar you’ll be able to find out more about deposit protection legislation in Scotland and how it affects you. We'll also be discussing timelines for deposit protection and how to prepare if dispute resolution is needed.

The drinks reception will provide a great opportunity for you to meet some of The LPS Scotland team and network with your colleagues in the letting industry. If you’d like to attend please click on the link to RSVP below.

Date: Tuesday 18th September

Seminar: 15:00 - 17:00

Drinks Reception: 17.00-19.30 (drinks and canapés will be provided)

Location: Jurys Inn Aberdeen Hotel, Union Square, Guild Street, Aberdeen, AB11 5RG

Click here to RSVP

 

Drop-in Sessions

In September and October The LPS Scotland are holding information drop-in sessions across Scotland, where landlords and letting agents can pop in to meet some of our team, ask questions and have a demonstration of our system.

We’ll be running morning (10am – 1pm) and afternoon (3pm – 6pm) sessions at 25 locations across the country. Simply pop along when it's convenient for you – there’s no need to book.

To find out more and see the locations we’re visiting, please visit www.lettingprotectionscotland.com/events.

We look forward to seeing you there.

A Day at the Races for the lucky winners of our first prize draw

A lucky landlord from Perth and a national letting agent have won a hospitality package to the William Hill Ayr Gold Cup Opening Day. Letting agent Rettie & Co and landlord Mr Robertson were automatically entered into the prize draw when they submitted a deposit to The LPS Scotland. The prize allows them to treat five of their colleagues, family members or friends to a five-star day out at the Ayr Cup on 20th September 2012.

We’re delighted to welcome Rettie & Co and Mr Robertson as customers and we hope that they have a fantastic day out at the races.

Two more lucky winners will be drawn from those who have registered their deposits online with The LPS Scotland between the 1st August 2012 and 11.59pm on the 30th August. Each deposit is automatically counted as one entry into the prize draw, so the more deposits registered the greater the chance of winning.

For more information please visit our website.

One month of deposit protection in Scotland

It’s been one month since legislation came into force requiring landlords and letting agents protect their tenant’s deposits in a Government approved scheme. We have been really pleased to see so many landlords and letting agents sign up to protect their deposits so quickly since the 2nd July. If you’re confused about the deadline for protecting deposits, don’t forget you can use our simple compliance calculator which helps you to work it out.

Here’s our top 10 facts about deposit protection with The LPS Scotland:

  1. It’s the landlord’s ultimate responsibility to protect a tenant’s deposit. An agent can be instructed to take/protect the deposit, but the landlord remains ultimately responsible for ensuring the agent protects it in line with the legislation.
  2. If the tenant believes their deposit has not been protected in line with the legislation, they can make an application to the Sheriff under Housing Act (Scotland) 2006. If the court is satisfied the landlord has failed to comply, they may order the landlord to pay the tenant up to three times the tenancy deposit.
  3. A deposit cannot consist of any property other than money (under the Housing Act (Scotland) 2006). A deposit is intended to be held as security for the performance of any obligations of the tenant, or the discharge of any liability arising under or in connection with the tenancy.
  4. If there are multiple tenants at the same property, the landlord or letting agent has two options. A separate tenancy can be created in respect of each tenant, and are therefore each registered as ‘sole tenants’. Alternatively, a joint tenancy can be created and a lead tenant selected, who will act on behalf of all the other tenants.
  5. Under the Housing Act (Scotland) 2006 landlords and letting agents have an obligation to provide tenants with information on the protection of their deposit. We have developed an Information Template you can download which when completed contains all the required information the tenant needs.
  6. Landlords, agents and tenants can all request the repayment of a deposit to the appropriate parties at the end of a tenancy. When one party requests a repayment, the other needs to confirm whether they agree with the proposal, by completing a repayment response form - either online or by post. All deposits are repaid within 5 working days of a fully completed repayment claim.
  7. Unique Repayment IDs are given to the agent/landlord and the lead tenant when a deposit submission payment has cleared. Each Repayment ID must be provided when a deposit repayment request is submitted. Repayment IDs should be treated as confidential and not given to the other party.
  8. We offer a free ADR service to all our landlords and letting agents. This is an independent service that acts as an alternative to going to court, aiming to resolve disputes between landlords and tenants through evidence-based adjudication.
  9. The legislation was introduced as the Government recognised deposits taken have been unfairly withheld at the end of the tenancy. The introduction of the Tenancy Deposit Protection encourages agents/landlords to set up tenancies correctly through the use of formal tenancy agreements, inventories, condition reports and other necessary documentation. The legislation aims to ensure good practice in deposit handling, so that when a Tenant pays a deposit and is entitled to get it back, he or she can be assured that this will happen.
  10. The LPS Scotland is open to all letting agents and landlords to protect deposits for Scottish tenancies and is free to use. Our funds are secured with UK approved banks, and we are run by the only UK-based company with five years experience of running a similar custodial deposit protection scheme.

If you have any questions about deposit protection, our easy to navigate FAQ’s should have the answer or you can give our team a call on 0844 472 6666.

Have you protected your tenant's deposit yet?

We’re now into the third week of tenancy deposit protection in Scotland and it’s been great to see so many landlords and letting agents sign up so quickly to register their tenants’ deposits in line with the new legislation. If you’re still unsure of the timescales for complying with the regulations and when you need to submit your deposits, you can use the free compliance calculator on our website.

Anthony Cox from our Edinburgh office has been out and about visiting landlords and letting agents to talk through tenancy deposit protection obligations.  In the process we have had some really positive feedback about the effect of the new legislation, including comments that tenants are happier to rent knowing that their deposit will be protected. Anthony gives presentations to groups and individuals on request, and is very happy to travel the length and breadth of Scotland in order to do this! If you’re looking for someone to discuss deposit protection in Scotland with, Anthony is your man – and, as you can see from the picture, he has been embracing the Scottish spirit for our launch! He is a member of The Royal Company of Archers and is often on ceremonial duties when the Queen is in Scotland. If you want to get in touch with Anthony, you can email him.

If you register your deposit with The LPS Scotland on or before 30th August 2012, you could be in with a chance of winning a day at the races! We’re running a prize draw where you can win hospitality tickets to the William Hill Ayr Gold Cup Opening Day at Ayr Racecourse.

There will be two draws – one if you submit a deposit to us up to and including 31st July 2012, and one if you submit a deposit between 1st August and 30th August 2012. Every deposit submitted to The LPS Scotland within these times will qualify as one entry, so don’t worry if you’ve already submitted a deposit, you will have been automatically entered. To find out more, and read our terms and conditions, please visit our website.

Invitation to our launch celebration

In celebration of our launch this month, we are holding two drinks receptions on the 18th and 19th of July and I would be delighted for you to join us! The first event on the 18th July will be held at The George Hotel in Edinburgh and the event on the 19th will be at The Grand Central Hotel, Glasgow. Drinks and canapés will be provided.

You’ll be able to meet myself, Anthony and the rest of the team behind The LPS Scotland, as well as network with your colleagues in the letting industry. There’ll be information on tenancy deposit protection in Scotland and you can find out more about our ‘Win a Day at the Races’ promotion.

If you’d like to come along to one of these launch events, please let us know in advance by clicking on the relevant link below:

Wednesday 18th July Time: 17.00-19.30 Location: The George Hotel, Edinburgh Click here to RSVP Thursday 19th July Time: 17.00-19.30 Location: The Grand Central Hotel, Glasgow Click here to RSVP

 

I look forward to seeing you there

Kevin