From Monday 2 November 2015, any deposits passed to a landlord or agent from a tenant to rent a home must be lodged for protection, within 30 working days of receipt, with mydeposits Jersey, a government authorised tenancy deposit protection scheme.
The aims of the new law
The new legislation is designed to safeguard the tenant’s deposit and ensure they get it back at the end of the tenancy, provided they have met the terms of their tenancy agreement. Deposit protection aims to help improve standards in the rental sector.
Letting or managing agent’s membership
If you’re a letting or managing agent, you can set up a membership with mydeposits to protect and manage deposits on behalf of your landlords. Landlords should check with their agent who is responsible for handing over deposit money to the scheme.
Which deposits need protecting?
The new law applies to all new, renewed or varied tenancy agreements from 2 November 2015. You can also voluntarily protect your tenant’s deposit in the scheme even if you have a tenancy that is not yet due for renewal.
How do I protect a deposit?
You have 30 working days from receiving the deposit money to lodge it with mydeposits. It’s an offence not to protect your tenant’s deposit and you could have to pay a fine of up to £2,000.
Administration fee for protecting
It’s free to join mydeposits Jersey. We will charge an admin fee of £20 plus GST (£21) to protect the deposit, but this is taken out of the tenant’s deposit when the deposit is protected.
Protecting the deposit
We will safeguard the deposit in a regulated bank. It’s held in an account until it is due to be repaid at the end of the tenancy. The deposit is safeguarded in the event of bank failure. Once the deposit is protected we will send confirmation to you and your tenant, including the deposit amount paid in, how to get your deposit back and what to do if there’s a dispute over the deposit.
Returning the deposit
Either the landlord or tenant can apply to mydeposits to release the deposit at the end of the tenancy. We will return it in five working days once both landlord and tenant have authorised its release. Try to agree between yourselves how much deposit should be returned before applying for its release to help speed up the process.
Disputes over the return of the deposit
mydeposits offers a free dispute resolution service if you disagree about how much deposit money should be returned at the end of a tenancy. You can also have your case heard by the Petty Debts Court.