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Deposit Recovery

Has your landlord or letting agent taken money from your deposit? Has your deposit not been protected according to deposit protection scheme rules? If so the National Renters alliance may be able to help you get your money back.

Deposit disputes between landlords, letting agents and renters are one of the most common tenancy problems. Most renters face problems getting their money back if they rent over any significant period of time. To help reduce these problems, the government introduced legislation requiring landlords to place deposits in a government-backed deposit guarantee scheme. However, despite this many unscrupulous letting agents and landlords still openly flout rules in order to steal money from your deposit.

Common justification landlords and letting agents use to take money from your deposit include “professional cleaning” or various charges such as “check-out fees” which although not unlawful must follow certain regulatory procedures.

Some landlords and letting agents have also been known to keep letters from deposit protection schemes secret from renters to make it more difficult for tenants to challenge deductions to their deposits. These excuses are often spurious and the National Renters Alliance can recover such deductions in many cases.

Did your landlord put your deposit in a government-backed deposit protection scheme?

According to government regulation, your landlord or letting agent must put your deposit in a government-backed tenancy deposit scheme if you rent your home on an assured shorthold tenancy that started after 6 April 2007. Your landlord or letting agent must place this in a scheme within 30 days of getting it

In England and Wales your deposit can be registered with three different deposit guarantee schemes:

Separate arrangements exist in Scotland and Northern Ireland. It is possible for your landlord to accept valuable items as a deposit instead of money, but these are not protected by the schemes You are entitled to get your deposit back if you:

If you would like more information about such problmes please visit our frequently asked questions

What do I do if my deposit was not protected?

Despite government regulations many landlords and letting agents do not protect deposits. In such cases penalties exist for landlords and letting agents who do not

If you have been affected by your landlord or letting agent not protecting your deposit, contact the National Renters Alliance today to see how we can help.

My letting agent has gone bankrupt with my deposit, can I get the money back?

Very often the National Renters Alliance comes across letting agents who do not protect deposits and periodically bankrupt their company taking deposits with them. In this case it still might be possible to pursue your landlord since he or she has ultimate responsibility to follow government deposit protection guidelines.


I paid a £950 deposit for a flat in Liverpool. When I moved out my other housemates and I cleaned the place from top to bottom for three whole days. The letting agent took all of the deposit for “professional cleaning” and produced close-ups of walls which they said were filthy. I was so embarrassed until I heard about the NRA who explained the common tricks agencies use for withholding deposits. They helped me challenge the agency and got the money back, I’d use them again any day.

Patrick Littlewood, Liverpool

Contact the Renters Alliance

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