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For the first time in England and Wales, landlords and letting agents can now choose which deposit protection method they use – either custodial or insured – from the same place.
From April 2 The Deposit Protection Service (The DPS) has become the only provider to offer both services at the same time.
The DPS is already England and Wales’ only provider of a custodial scheme, a free service where the landlord or letting agent hands over the deposit for protection for the duration of the tenancy.
Now The DPS also offers an insured scheme, which allows the landlord or letting agent to keep the deposit, paying a small fee to protect against problems at the end of the tenancy.
The DPS director Kevin Firth said: “The new insured scheme gives our customers the kind of choice they’ve been asking us for.
“At the click of a mouse you can choose whether you want an insured scheme, or let The DPS look after the deposit for free.
“In either case, you will get the same fast, fair and secure service which our 340,000 landlords have come to expect from us.”
Easy and cheap
Landlords and letting agents will be able to register with the service online and by phone; and manage both their custodial and insured deposits via one easy, integrated online account.
Both services are supported by the The DPS’ successful Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) service in the case of disagreement at the end of the tenancy.
The ADR team comprises independent, legally trained adjudicators who assess submitted evidence before coming to a fair conclusion as to how a deposit should be divided.
The insured scheme will be available to all landlords, and letting agents who have registered with a recognised trade body such as NALS or Safe Agent.
Value for money
The price for DPS’ insured scheme is a match for the cheapest scheme on the market.
The DPS insured scheme will not be charging membership or annual renewal fees to its customers, so no membership paperwork to contend with either!
Letting Agents will be charged per deposit monthly by direct debit; the (ex vat) fee to protect each deposit will be just £9.50. Further discounts will be available for volume.
Landlords will be charged just £15.00 per deposit for deposits under £500 (inc vat), and only £22.20 per deposit for deposits over £500 (inc vat) on a pay-as-you-go basis.
The Deposit Protection Service is the custodial tenancy deposit protection scheme accredited by the Government. It is provided free of charge, and funded entirely by the interest earned from deposits held in the scheme. The DPS was approved by the UK government to run an insured TDP scheme in September 2012 in addition to the approval it has already been granted by the UK government in respect of the custodial scheme. The DPS is run by Computershare Investor Services PLC.
For more information, visit www.depositprotection.com
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