As of 6th April 2007 tenants were given extra protection with regards to deposit money that they were handing over to landlords if they were signing an Assured Shorthold Tenancy agreement. Prior to this date landlords could hold that deposit money in their own bank accounts and then unfortunately a number of rogue landlords saw this as an easy opportunity to pocket some more money from their tenants by witholding the return of part or all of that deposit money when the tenant moved out.

Since that date any tenant that rents a property and signs an Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST) agreement and hands over a ‘deposit’ should ask the question of their landlord as to which scheme they going to use to protect your deposit funds.

Click here to see details of the three main schemes that your landlord should be using. We issue all our tenants that rent rooms in Chelmsford with an AST and register all deposits with The Deposit Protection Service

Any landlords that take a ‘deposit’ and ask you to sign an AST and then don’t use one of the schemes are breaking the law and you as the tenant can take your landlord to court and they can be forced to pay a penalty to you.

Should there be any disputes about how much of the deposit should be returned at the end of the tenancy then the deposit schemes provide a resolution service to help sort out these issues which previously would have been handled directly between the landlord and the tenant.

In some ways it is a shame that they had to introduce this procedure when many landlords were able to fairly and efficiently give the deposit monies back to their tenants but as nomal a few rogue landlords ruined it for everyone and now there needs to be these deposit schemes. It does however provide protection for everyone and makes it very clear about what should be done.

If you are looking to rent a room in Chelmsford and your landlord asks you to sign an AST but does not propose to put your money in one of the deposit schemes you should not rent rooms from them. Some landlords will ask for an “administration fee” instead of a deposit or ask you to pay two months rents in advance instead of a deposit but both of those options are dubious as to whether they should really be registered with a deposit scheme instead of trying to stay outside the parameters of complying with the correct rules and regulations.

If you are interested in renting in Chelmsford and want to enquire about our rooms to rent please contact us or look at the current available rooms to rent.