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News: Landlords welcome new scheme

Thu, 24 May 07

The new Tenant Guarantee Scheme has received massive from landlords and tenants, reports ResidentalLandlord.co.uk...

‘Nearly everybody has said the scheme is a great idea and will benefit both tenants and landlords’, said Karl Hopkins of Residential Landlord, the landlord information website behind the scheme.

‘From our forum and “Agony column” we know of the problems that deposits cause for both landlords and tenants. When handing over possession of a valuable property it is only reasonable for landlords to seek some protection but there can be arguments at the end of tenancies. This can be because either the landlord or the tenant, or both, have unrealistic expectations about what does or doesn’t need to be put right.

‘And anyway, under the current system tenants worried that they may not get their deposit back often quite simply do not bother to pay the last month’s rent - leaving landlords with nothing to cover damage and the like.

‘Our scheme gets round all this and means members of the scheme will effectively be rewarded for being good tenants.

A welcome alternative for landlords

Since April landlords who take deposits have been required by law to ‘protect’ these by signing up with one of only three authorised deposit protection schemes. This can involve costs of around £100 for a single deposit, plus added bureaucracy and uncertainty. Disputes about return of the money mean it has to be handed over while arbitration continues.

The Tenant Guarantee Scheme was conceived in part as a means of providing an alternative to landlords taking deposits, and thereby bypassing the need to become involved in deposit protection.

By joining the scheme tenants can provide their landlords with guarantees and insurance cover far better than afforded by a deposit. In return, landlords need not demand deposits on their properties, thereby avoiding the cost, hassle and uncertainty involved in deposit protection schemes.

Landlords gain because they have better protection and none of the costs involved in taking deposits. Tenants gain because they do not have to find large upfront deposits.

Full details of the scheme, sample cover documents, membership criteria, costs and frequently asked questions and answers are all available on the website www.iguarantee.co.uk.

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