The UK’s leading landlord trade body the National Residential Landlords Association (NRLA) has backed government plans to introduce lifetime deposits for tenants as they move around the privately rented sector.
This means that all sectors of the private rented sector (PRS) now agree that lifetime deposits would be a good idea including agent, tenant, regulatory and landlord groups.
And NRLA’s just-published New Deal for the PRS document explains why the government’s plan to create a portable tenancy deposit for millions of tenants across England and Wales is a good idea.
This key point is that lifetime deposits will stop tenants having to finance two deposits when move home – i.e. putting a new deposit down at their next home while waiting for their old deposit to be released.
Word of warning
But the NRLA also has a word of warning for Ministers, saying that the scheme must not put off landlords from making claims against tenants who leave with rent arrears or who have damaged a property.
“This could arise when a tenant transitions from one rental property to another, and where part or all of the deposit they paid is required to cover or is being disputed as a result of damage to a property,” the NRLA says.
“The scheme must protect the new landlord in such circumstances.”
Propertymark agrees on the ‘double deposit’ point, saying: “An inability to find these additional funds is a huge drawback of the current system as it slows the market down; something which introducing a lifetime deposit could easily solve.”
Alicia Kennedy (pictured), Director of lobbying group Generation Rent, adds: “It is difficult to save five weeks’ rent to put down a deposit when your existing one is tied up in the current property.
“The government must also make sure the process of getting your deposit back is fair, to give renters trust in the system.”