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Bond not protected

(33 Posts)
Lolimax Thu 21-Jan-16 20:16:00

Im giving up my tenancy. It dawned on me that my landlord never told me where my bond was protected so I asked him tonight. He thought I was being funny with him and said if I left the house in order I'd get my bond back, that he wasn't out to rip me off. I text back to say no, he'd been a good landlord but I'd like to know which scheme he'd used. I'm pretty sure he has just kept the bond secured himself. He's a decent man and I know I'll get it back but where do I stand legally if there is a dispute and he hadn't put it in a scheme?
Also if he panics now and puts it into one will I be able to get proof it's been in one since I first moved in?

caroldecker Thu 21-Jan-16 20:34:03

If it is not in a scheme you can take him to court and get up to 3 times the amount back.
The scheme will have the date recorded.

Lolimax Thu 21-Jan-16 20:36:23

Thanks carol. There would be some sort of certificate would there?

honeysucklejasmine Thu 21-Jan-16 20:37:33

Ooh, if he's not done it he'll be kicking himself. Expensive mistake.

caroldecker Thu 21-Jan-16 20:41:40

The government provides a good summary, with links and the information you should have received.

Lolimax Thu 21-Jan-16 20:43:45

I saw that carol. I was in 2 minds to send him the link. I'll wait til we meet him now unless I hear from him. Have I the right to demand to know where the bond is? I suppose I have.

Choughed Thu 21-Jan-16 20:47:04

There are only three schemes so you can contact each one and ask them if they have your deposit.

lastnightiwenttomanderley Thu 21-Jan-16 20:48:50

The landlord has to not only protect your deposit but provide you with evidence of doing so - they have thirty days following receipt in which to do this. As I understand it, the penalty for not providing you with the proof is the same as if they hadn't protected it at all.

Lolimax Thu 21-Jan-16 20:49:44

Choughed I've just text him to say there are only 3 schemes and I'll ring tomorrow to see which scheme my deposit is in. That'll be interesting!

Fizrim Thu 21-Jan-16 20:49:47

The LL has a limited amount of time to lodge the deposit with one of the approved schemes so really you should have had a letter telling you which one it was in not just his bank account very soon after the start of your tenancy.

Lolimax Thu 21-Jan-16 20:50:44

I've been there 4 years so you'd think I've had received something by now!!

Lolimax Fri 22-Jan-16 13:29:02

Turns out he went to protect my bond but never actually did. Not sure where that leaves me now. We're meeting in 2 weeks to look at the house but without the bond protection I'm also left without an arbitration process if we disagree. Wise people any suggestions?

PragmaticWench Fri 22-Jan-16 13:35:07

Did you go through a moving-in inventory and do you have a copy of the paperwork from that? If he didn't do one, it makes it almost impossible for him to prove any damage was caused by you.

I'd use the link above and check out Landlord zone so you know your rights. If he's been good so far I wouldn't go in guns blazing, but it's good to be able to calmly state the law and come to a reasonable solution if there's an issue.

specialsubject Fri 22-Jan-16 13:38:30

he can't keep any of the bond and you can sue him for up to 3 times its value. So tell him that and suggest he returns the full deposit with no argument to avoid that.

there's no way he can get out of this. Stupid sod. The rules have been there since 2007. He should thank his lucky stars if you don't sue him.

Lolimax Fri 22-Jan-16 13:41:08

I've got a basic list but there is very little in the house. He keeps mentioning repairs and I'm not sure what he means. I know he has new tenants lined up to move straight in. He's already text me to sign a letter stating I'm responsible for all repairs which concerns me as where is the line for wear and tear? I know essentially he's a nice man but once someone gets my back up I'm on my guard.

Choughed Fri 22-Jan-16 14:01:01

There is no debate now. Write to him, by email and registered post if necessary, and tell him that as he has failed to comply with the legislation, you expect your deposit back in full at the end of the tenancy or you will take legal action. He hasn't got a leg to stand on.

Strictly speaking you can't "sue him for 3 times the cost of the deposit". That is the maximum a judge would award you if he withheld your deposit and you were successful in a legal case against him.

But he has absolutely no legal right to a penny of your deposit now that he has failed to protect it.

Choughed Fri 22-Jan-16 14:02:16

Oh, and LLs are not allowed to make deductions from deposits for normal wear and tear.

PotteryPotKnobs Fri 22-Jan-16 14:05:57

Please don't sign anything until you have had legal advice.

And, as PP's have said, as he hasn't put your deposit in a payment protection scheme - my LL did, and I received notification of which scheme it was within 2 weeks, and got it all back at the end via a bank transfer from the scheme to my bank account - so you are entitled to claim 3 times the amount of deposit back from him through the small claims court.

specialsubject Fri 22-Jan-16 14:15:28

without a protected deposit he can't deduct for any damage, even if there is any.

please get informed on your rights. The protections are there (despite what the anti-LL lot on here may bleat) so use them.

as I said; his choices are return the entire deposit or get taken to court for it and possibly more. He forfeited any right to damages payment by not protecting the deposit.

lastnightiwenttomanderley Fri 22-Jan-16 14:18:28

Also, someone may correct me, but my understanding is that if there is no record of the condition when you moved in to the property then the law works in your favour anyway.

He's trying to backtrack - do not sign whatever it is he wants you to sign. Particularly as there isn't an inventory, how do you define repairs? He might claim there was a hell of a lot more 'damage' than there is!

special subject has it right. Gently point out that he is in breach of the legislation and that it's probably just easiest for him to return your deposit in full to control his liability!

lastnightiwenttomanderley Fri 22-Jan-16 14:19:38

PS. I write this as a landlord. If I screw up, that's my fault entirely and I'd have to suck it up. He's the one that's messed up here, not you! It takes all of ten minutes max to protect a deposit!

specialsubject Fri 22-Jan-16 14:33:06

I'm a landlord too. He's got the two choices I mentioned. That's it. Very simple!

Lolimax Fri 22-Jan-16 17:26:49

Thanks all. Fab support and advice. If it wasn't for MN I wouldn't have even known about the bond needing protection.

specialsubject Fri 22-Jan-16 17:43:51

please read before you rent again:

it is now the law that you are given a copy of this.

Toohardtofindaproperusername Fri 22-Jan-16 22:45:07

Shelter have a free and fantastic helpline giving advice to tenants. Worth holding on til you get hold of them (lines are after busy).... They are worth waiting for and give excellent advice.

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