The Tenant Deposit Scheme is due to come into force this March. We will have full details for the launch but it basically means that the tenancy deposit is held by a Government approved third party.
There will only be compensation for damage or neglect if a tenant agrees or if the dispute resolution service finds in favour of the landlord. In the latter case, the onus is on the landlord to prove that the damage occurred during the tenancy.
This is best achieved by the use of an Inventory & Condition Report, professionally prepared by an independent inventory clerk. The use of an independent inventory clerk will not be mandatory but we would strongly recommend it as a claim may not be successful without it.