Rogue Agents stole £926k worth of tenancy deposits in 2017

By RentSafeUK
In News/Blog
Jan 2nd, 2018

Fresh analysis from the industry reveals that rogue agents were convicted of stealing just over £926,000 worth of tenancy deposits last year.

Deposit-free renting firm Dlighted, who keep a running total of the cash value of deposits criminal letting agents have been convicted of stealing, reports that by the of the final quarter of 2017 overall thefts totalled £926,037 – an average theft of £38,585 per conviction.

At least 25 rogue letting agents and buy-to-let landlords have been convicted of offences relating to the theft of deposits ranging from £130,000 to £595 throughout the year.

Herein lies the problem more and more UK landlords are facing.

Landlords primarily want a foolproof way of finding and keeping tenants, but the deposit system (as it stands) can present a minefield of hassle and hazards for landlords.

So as the amount of private landlords deciding to ditch taking deposits increases and the pay squeeze intensifies coupled with wage growth falling further behind inflation, more and more tenants are asking: Is it possible to protect against the loss of my deposit from charges for accidental damages caused to the landlord’s property?

As Mydeposits quite rightly point out, a deposit acts as a security blanket for the landlord against any breaches of the tenancy agreement. However, if a tenant has an accident in the property or (heaven forbid !) their deposit is stolen by the agent, more often than not, they will have no way of paying for repairs from extra income or savings. The tenant can then lose their deposit and this means the tenant is caught not being able to move home, unless they save up an entirely new deposit.
In this situation, a landlord may be left with a tenant who has lost their deposit and who also has an additional repair bill. If a tenant cannot meet the damages bill it will immediately put both parties into a difficult position as the tenant may feel frustrated and trapped. This scenario becomes known as the “stalemate impasse” – a position to which neither party can move without great financial pains, becoming almost impossible to agree on an amicable way out and often ends up in a courtroom; inevitably costing the landlord and the tenant dearly.

The Cure?…

Since we introduced our specialist Tenant Contents Insurance landlords and tenants are actively recognising the benefits, where the weight of the consequences outweigh any form of cost.

For a very small monthly amount (which can be set up via direct debit), a tenant can protect their deposit and the rental property with a simple click of a button (click to get a quote now).

Landlords and Agents that use our partner site Tenant Referencing UK’s application form can also nominate their tenant(s) for a contents insurance quote, to ensure that they’re protected from the outset.