LETTING & ESTATE AGENT

Claiming your deposit

Claiming your deposit

Though this article has previously been published and sent. The deposit process still attracts a lot of questions from our tenants which is of course natural. However, please re-read the article below to re-fresh your memory of the process. It’s important to remember that we have no access to your deposit and that it will be Safe Deposit Scotland that will refund it.

The Scottish Government introduced a Tenancy Deposit Scheme to ensure that the tenants are protected and returning of the deposit is a fair process. Since last year it is a legal requirement for all letting agents and landlords to register a deposit with a deposit scheme. Here at Martin & Co, we process all deposits through Safe Deposit Scotland.

So how do you go about getting it back? First of all, at the beginning of your tenancy you have to make sure that the ingoing inventory has been carried out and that it is accurate. The ingoing inventory should always be paid for by the landlord. However, landlords are not legally obliged to provide one.

If one does take place then the inventory company should give both tenants and landlords some time to amend the document before final copy is issued. You should always contact with the inventory company if you believe that the document is incorrect. This will reduce the possibility of the dispute arising with regards to your deposit refund.

If you choose to rent the property from Martin & Co, you will receive the ingoing inventory after you move in. You will have 9 days to amend any details that you deem incorrect and notify about any damage that might have been missed by the inventory clerk. It is advisable that you take this process seriously.

When you vacate the property, the outgoing inventory will be carried out and compared to the ingoing inventory in order to decide if any deductions should take place. Obviously fair wear and tear is taken into consideration.

As previously mentioned, letting agents are no longer allowed to hold deposits- they are all lodged in the Safe Deposit schemes. There is no time frame given to process any deductions that may be necessary and refund the deposits. It should only be as soon as administratively possible and here at Martin & Co we aim to process them within 28 days.

We pass all information that we collected on to Safe Deposit Scotland and they will contact the tenants with a list of proposed deductions if any are needed. If deductions occur you will be given 31 working days to agree or disagree to the proposed deductions. Once these have been accepted the deposit will be paid into your nominated account within 5 working days.

If no deductions are needed or if you agree to the deductions imposed then the deposit will be paid into specified account within 5 working days.

However, if you choose to dispute any deductions then both parties are provided with 20 working days to submit evidence to Safe Deposit Scotland. It will be then passed on to an independent adjudicator who will make the final decision on the matter. Evidence can consist of any photographic evidence and written correspondence about the matter being disputed.

One important issue to note is that the 28 days we have to process your deposit starts from the original end date of the tenancy and not the date you vacate. Therefore, if you vacate earlier for any reason, the 28 days will start from the original vacating date. However, if the termination occurs a considerable time before the original vacating date, we will attempt to find new tenants for the property. Once we establish a new tenancy that date will then act as your new vacating date.

Bear in mind that Martin & Co try to make this process as quick and easy as possible and aim to get your deposit back to as soon as possible. Please be patient!

If you require any advice on how to get your deposit back, do not hesitate to contact us by e-mailing contact.aberdeen@martinco.com