Where the terms of your tenancy agreement have been broken by the tenant, deductions from the deposit can be claimed for the cost of reinstating your property to the standards of the check-in/inventory report – but beware. If you don’t have certain key documents when you make your claim, it’s unlikely you’ll succeed in getting a tenancy deposit deduction.
Here are the key documents you’ll need when submitting your claim:
This is very important as it should set out details of what deductions can be made from the deposit and any individually negotiated clauses you may have agreed with the tenant. When you are making a claim, you need to specify which clause in the tenancy agreement allows you to do this.
TDS knows that many disputes are about cleaning or damage to the property. In order to prove these types of claims, landlords will usually have to present a detailed inventory/check in report which accurately describes the condition and cleanliness of the property at the start of the tenancy. This document should have been supplied to the tenant at the start of the tenancy and they should have been given an opportunity to make any amendments.
The landlord will need to have an updated inventory at check-out which describes the condition and cleanliness of the property at the end of the tenancy. Without this document it will be difficult to demonstrate any deterioration in the cleanliness and/or condition of the property at the end of the tenancy. The tenant will need to have been given an opportunity to comment on the check out.
The landlord must present statements as evidence of non-payment of rent if they wish to make a deduction from the deposit for rent arrears.
Invoices and quotes or estimates from suppliers for the work involved in reinstating a property are important when quantifying a claim. It’s important to note that landlords should always consider betterment and fair wear and tear to a property when making claims for repairs or improvements.
Whilst this isn’t a key document, the free deductions template from TDS can be used to help you decide whether you have a reasonable claim. If you’re a TDS member agent or landlord, you can also use it set out your claim in a structured and transparent way, with the key documents as evidence attached. The details in the Proposal for Deposit Deductions along with the supporting evidence (and any comments made by tenants) can also be uploaded directly into the TDS Disputes Evidence Portal.
The transparency of the process can also help tenants to better understand the reasons for deductions at an early stage, which can lead to fewer disputes. In the event that an agreement isn’t reached, and the deduction is referred to TDS’ disputes process, the completed Deposit Deduction Template will be a key piece of evidence.
Tenancy Deposit Scheme (TDS) is a Government-approved scheme for the protection of tenancy deposits; TDS offers both Insured and Custodial protection and also provides fair adjudication for disputes that arise over the tenancy deposits that we protect.
We provide invaluable training in tenancy deposit protection and disputes for agents and landlords through the TDS Academy as well as joining with MOL to provide the Technical Award in Residential Tenancy Deposits.
TDS Insured Scheme: where a TDS member can hold the tenancy deposits as stakeholder during the term of the tenancy.
TDS Custodial Scheme: where TDS hold the deposit for the duration of the tenancy.
TDS Academy: TDS provides property professionals with invaluable training in tenancy deposit protection and tenancy deposit disputes.
TDS Northern Ireland: TDS is Northern Ireland’s leading and only not for profit tenancy deposit protection scheme.
TDS can only comment on the process for our scheme, other deposit protection schemes may have a different process/require different steps. Content is correct at the time of writing.
These views are those of the author alone and do not necessarily reflect the view of TDS, its officers and employees.