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Check if your landlord has to protect your deposit

This advice applies to Wales

You'll probably have to pay a 'tenancy deposit' to your landlord or letting agent before you can rent your home. The deposit is usually 1 to 2 months' rent but it could be more.

If you have an assured shorthold tenancy, your deposit must be 'protected' in a tenancy deposit scheme (TDP) until you move out of the property.

The scheme keeps your money safe and makes sure you get back what you're owed at the end of your tenancy.

Your deposit has to be protected even if someone else paid it for you, for example your parents or a friend.

Your deposit doesn't have to be protected if you're a lodger or a student in halls. It also doesn't have to be protected if you rent privately and have an assured or protected tenancy. 

Deadlines for protecting your deposit

Your landlord has to protect your deposit by a certain date, depending on when you paid it. You usually pay your deposit when you start your tenancy.

If you paid your deposit before 6 April 2007

Your situation                              When your deposit needed to be protected by
Your first fixed term ended on or after 6 April 2007 and you haven't renewed the tenancy since 23 June 2015
You first renewed your tenancy on or after 6 April 2007 and before 6 April 2012 6 May 2012
You first renewed your tenancy on or after 6 April 2012 30 days after your tenancy was first renewed

If you paid your deposit after 6 April 2007

When you paid your deposit                              When your deposit needed to be protected by
Before 6 April 2012 6 May 2012
On or after 6 April 2012 30 days after it was paid

Find out if your deposit is protected

Your deposit should be protected by one of 3 TDP scheme providers:

If your landlord or letting agent hasn't told you if they've protected your deposit, check the scheme providers' websites. You'll need to enter a few details, for example your postcode, surname and the date you started your tenancy. Your tenancy agreement, if you have one, will show this information.

You might need to enter the details of any joint tenants if you can't find the details under your own name. If you've renewed your tenancy it's worth checking the different start dates too.

If you still can't find out whether your deposit has been protected, speak to someone at each TDP scheme provider. You can find their contact numbers on their websites.

If your landlord hasn't protected your deposit

Don't worry if your landlord or letting agent hasn't protected your deposit when they should have - you don't need to do anything.

You'll still be able to claim back the money you're owed and you might be able to get compensation from your landlord.

Find out how to get your deposit back.

If you get a section 21 eviction notice

Your landlord will have to pay your deposit back to you before they can evict you with a section 21 notice if:

  • your deposit wasn't protected and it should have been
  • your deposit was protected late

Your landlord also has to give you 'prescribed information' - this includes details about the property and your deposit. They won't be able to evict you with a section 21 notice if they haven't given you this information.

If your landlord gives you the prescribed information late or pays your deposit back to you, they will be able to evict you with a section 21 notice.

Read more about what to do if you get a section 21 notice, or get help from your nearest Citizens Advice if your deposit hasn't been protected.

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