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How tenants can ensure deposits are protected; Your View.

Q What is a tenancy deposit? A Most private landlords and letting agents ask tenants for a deposit as security against damage to the property or non-payment of rent. There is no set figure for the amount of deposit asked for by the landlord - PS250, PS500 or more. Q What is a Tenancy Deposit Protection Scheme? A If you have paid a deposit after April 2007 to a private landlord or letting agent, it must be 'protected''. This means that you can be sure that you will get your deposit back at the end of the tenancy, so long as you are entitled to it. For example, your landlord maybe entitled to some of the deposit if there is any damage or if you have not paid all of your rent. The scheme also provides a service to sort out disagreements about the deposit without the need to go to court.

Q How do I know if my deposit is protected? A If you are looking for a place to rent, ask the landlord which tenancy deposit protection scheme they will use to safeguard your deposit. The landlord must give you details of the scheme they are using to protect the deposit. It is also important that you and your landlord agree on a list of the furniture and fittings in the property (known as an inventory). Q What happens at the end of the tenancy? A You should get your deposit back within ten days if you and your landlord agree about how much you should get back. The way this works, and what happens if there is a disagreement, depends on the type of scheme your landlord is using. Q What happens if there is a disagreement about paying back the deposit? A Each tenancy deposit protection scheme will have a free service which landlords and tenants can use to sort out disputes and disagreements. This is called an alternative dispute resolution service (ADR). The ADR service will decide how much of the deposit you should get back. The scheme will then pay you the money Q What if my landlord does not protect the deposit? A If the landlord or letting agent does not protect your deposit, you could take them to court.

| For more further information on tenancy deposits, contact your local CAB. There are CABs located in Darlington, Hartlepool, Middlesbrough, Stockton and Redcar & Cleveland.

TOMORROW: Jane Corbey, ward matron, North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust

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TODAY: Joe Michna, Citizens Advice Bureau manager
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Title Annotation:Letters
Publication:Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)
Date:Mar 11, 2013
Words:420
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