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Deposit-free renting to be discussed on Radio 4 at 12.15pm today

Deposit-free renting will be a subject of discussion on the ‘You and Yours’ consumer affairs programme to be broadcast today on BBC Radio 4 at 12.15pm.

Given the financial pressure on renters under the existing deposit system, with tenants sometimes having to wait weeks to get their deposit returned or having a battle to get charges or financial deductions removed, and not always successfully as deposit disputes don’t always go their way, there is, perhaps unsurprisingly, growing enthusiasm for deposit-free renting.

With a growing number of letting agents signing up to nil-deposit schemes, they are rapidly becoming more commonplace, which is ultimately welcome news for many renters given that research shows that they unequivocally want choices. 


But not everybody is convinced of the merits of the insurance-based alternative to traditional tenant deposits, and so today’s discussion, featuring Flatfair’s founder and CEO, Franz Doerr, should be a lively one.

You can listen to the show by clicking here

Want to comment on this story? If so...if any post is considered to victimise, harass, degrade or intimidate an individual or group of individuals on any basis, then the post may be deleted and the individual immediately banned from posting in future.

Poll: Are you a fan of deposit-free renting schemes?


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    Should be interesting

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    • 31 January 2019 12:19 PM

    With no real skin in the game and a pathetic eviction process is this wise!?
    Even with RGI it can take a few months for a RGI claim to be processed.
    You need the deposit to pay the mortgage.

    Not nuch point having to evict and then no rent or deposit monies.
    2 missed mortgage payments on a BTL mortgage and LPA receivers are appointed and LL could be bankrupted and homeless.
    Can't beat cold hard cash in LL bank account courtesy of the insurance based deposit scheme.
    No way will I allow anyone apart from me to hold my tenant deposits which will continue to be 8 weeks worth just done a slightly different way.


    Aren't you breaking the law by not depositing the deposit with a registered scheme? Not criticising, just interested in any legal way to avoid using these tenant-friendly schemes?

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    • 31 January 2019 15:49 PM

    I use mydeposits which is one of the deposit schemes which allows LL to hold the deposit.
    There is a fee per deposit protection which is why I only ever have the initial 6 month AST before proceeding onto a SPT or CPT.
    The fee is £20.
    Not sure if this is captured by the the tenant fee ban as you are officially allowed currently to charge an admin fee which might well be the same as the fee the LL has to pay!!!

    But I prefer to be in control which is why I would never permit a LA to have anything to do with rent or deposit monies.
    I'm just not a trusting chap!
    So if no deposit admin fee allowed then I'll incorporate into rent.
    Actually in practice I end up not charging anything for new tenancies apart from referencing.
    As for referencing I will be adopting the Tenant Referencing Passport strategy using LRS.
    If tenant prospects refuse to buy their TRP from LRS I simply won't consider them!!
    I doubt I'll have any problems with so many desperate tenants out there.
    After all one TRP is all that is needed at a cost of I think now £60. LRS is probably the most rigorous referencing incorporating network referencing.
    So the fee ban and deposit restriction won't affect me.
    Tenants might have to get used to a larger 1st monthly rent payment though which magically might equate to the additional 3 weeks on top of the 5 weeks deposit that I will be taking.
    At no time will there be ANY mention of an additional deposit amount.
    Just a large up front rent payment.
    Of course there is nothing to prevent me if I so choose at the end of a tenancy to offer the vacating tenants a goodwill gesture of 3 weeks worth of rent in addition to the deposit refund.
    Of course such a goodwill gesture would only occur if the tenants had complied with all their contractual obligations during the tenancy period!!!

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    I have used it, only the best renters get to use it as of course insurance companies don't want the risk either.
    Insurance companies would chase the tenant for arrears and costs, it might harden up the system and reduce problems, because you'd reduce risk of bad tenants by not having them with the scheme, so by only using the scheme poor tenants would never get a property in PRS.

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    • 01 February 2019 09:07 AM

    @m dudley
    Yep you are so correct.
    It is rarely considered but the facts are that most tenants are sub-optimal.
    They will bever qualify for these insurance schemes.
    Indeed many of them don't even have the resources for a deposit.
    It is not often realised or aporeciated that LL take a masdive risk on tenants who can't pasd all these RGI and deposit insurance checks. Few have decent guarantors and so it is the LL that takes a massive risk knowing that in the event of rent default he has a costly and dysfunctional eviction process to deal with.
    Makes you wonder why we LL bother!!?


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