Posted on Thu 03 May 2012 at 15:07 by Isobel John
Okay, so maybe that's shoehorning ABBA in just a little bit, but it's only 23 days until Eurovision and I'm excited.
Anyway, onto serious matters, and I can only apologise for not mentioning this earlier - it's difficult keeping up with all of the legislative changes going on around housing at the moment.
If you live in private accommodation, you will have had to pay a deposit before you moved in. Now, by law your deposit must be protected by an independent government-managed scheme: this basically means that your landlord can't run off with your cash, or make unfair charges without you exercising your right for an external body to intervene. Isn't the justice system neat sometimes?
Recent changes to the law have really tightened up on deposit protection, which is a good thing. The long and short of it is, if your landlord hasn't placed your deposit in a protection scheme by May 6th (ie. in three days time) then they won't be legally compliant. Unfortunately, many landlords are wise to the fact that some of their tenants won't have the foggiest idea what the hell a DPS is and therefore could quite easily screw you over unless you're in the know.
If you're a bit of a geek like me, you can check out the changes to legislation here.
So here's what you need to do unless you already know for sure that your deposit is protected:
How to check your deposit is protected:
1. You should have been sent some paperwork (formal name ‘Prescribed Information’) that details how your deposit is protected. If you’ve got that and can see that information then you’re golden, but go ahead and double check online anyway.
2. It must be in one of three schemes and you should have been made aware which one. Below are the links to check deposit protection for each of them – you’ll need some details such as your postcode, the deposit amount and tenancy start date.
Deposit Protection Scheme (DPS)
The Dispute Service (TDS)
If you’re not sure which scheme you’re deposit should be in… try checking them all!
Can’t see the confirmation you’re after?
If you’ve checked all the channels above and can’t get that proof of your deposit protection, then contact your landlord (or agent if the property is managed by them) and ask which scheme the deposit is in and for proof of it.
Still need help?
If you’re having trouble getting co-operation from your landlord, or want more advice on your deposit, you can email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) or the advice centre (email@example.com)
That's all on that front for now folks - please spread the word to all your mates, and keep an eye out for our information about moving out over the next couple of months :)
(also, on a non-housing related note, GO VOTE IN THE OFFICER ELECTIONS PLEASE. www.warwicksu.com/elections - I want someone to hand over too!)