Secretary of State James Brokenshire MP has announced a call for evidence on tenancy deposit protection in England.
The call for evidence seeks to understand the barriers tenants face providing a second deposit when moving from one tenancy to the next. It will look at what could be done to speed up the return of deposits to tenants at the end of the tenancy.
The government will consider whether existing initiatives to address deposit affordability are meeting tenants’ needs and whether the market can offer improved products. They will also explore innovative approaches that could be taken to help tenants move more easily, including allowing tenants to passport their deposit between tenancies.
“More than four million people live in the private rented sector, yet when moving home, some tenants can find it a struggle to provide a second deposit to their new landlord – risking falling into debt or becoming trapped in their current home. Ministers want to understand the scale of this problem.
“Ministers are inviting proposals to make it easier for renters to transfer deposits directly between landlords when moving from one property to the next.
Freeing up deposits and allowing a renter’s hard-earned cash to follow them from property to property – as they move to take that perfect job, to move nearer to family or find a place that suits their changing needs – will create a fairer housing market that works for all.”
James Brokenshire’s forward to the 35-page government document states:
“I am committed to making the process for tenants getting their deposit back much smoother. I want to understand whether there should be a deadline for landlords returning deposits. I also want to look at whether existing initiatives are meeting tenants’ needs and whether the market can offer improved products. Alongside this, I want to look more widely at whether innovative approaches to helping tenants move more easily, including allowing tenants to passport their deposit between tenancies.
“It is important that good landlords have the confidence to let out their properties safe in the knowledge that a deposit will provide them with reasonable protection from damages to their property. Any improvements to the way deposits are returned at the end of the tenancy will need to ensure that deposits still serve this purpose and that deposit protection continues to work well for both tenants and landlords.”
To see the full call for evidence, click here.
Norwood, G – Letting Agent Today. (2019). Accessible: https://www.lettingagenttoday.co.uk/breaking-news/2019/6/more-change-as-government-considers-deposit-passporting. Last Accessed: 3 July 2019.
Ministry of Housing. (2019). Tenancy deposit reform: a call for evidence. Accessible: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/tenancy-deposit-reform-a-call-for-evidence. Last Accessed: 3 July 2019.
Shoffman, M – Property Industry Eye. (2019). Housing secretary supports allowing tenants to transfer their deposits between rental properties. Accessible: https://www.propertyindustryeye.com/housing-secretary-supports-allowing-tenants-to-transfer-their-deposits-between-rental-properties/. Last Accessed: 3 July 2019.