19 January 2010
mydeposits.co.uk the only pay-as-you-go insurance-based tenancy deposit protection scheme, has commented on the latest 23 per cent price hike by The Dispute Service (TDS).
Eddie Hooker, Chief Executive, mydeposits.co.uk, said:
“Landlord users of mydeposits are already benefiting from a VAT price freeze at 2009 levels. Today I can reassure the vast bulk of our agent users that we have no plans for any price rises during 2010. We think this is the least we can do to support the private-rented sector as it emerges from a very difficult and volatile period.
“This announcement by TDS has raised eyebrows across the sector. I believe this new ‘two-fee instalment’ model, with the second instalment linked to the number of agent protections requiring Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR), should be approached with care.
“Last year’s TDS decision to only accept ‘accredited’ agents was intended to reduce the risk and cost of protecting deposits. Their announcement yesterday of a hefty price increase suggests this approach is not working.
“Letting agents are likely to be frustrated as they can expect further price increases if they are unlucky enough to experience more disputes. This could be the first step along the road to charging for ADR.”
T: 020 7840 8925
NOTES TO EDITORS:
Mydeposits is the trading name of Tenancy Deposit Solutions Limited, a company jointly owned by the National Landlords Association and HFIS plc T/A Hamilton Fraser Insurance (the Scheme Administrator) to deliver an insurance-backed tenancy deposit protection scheme under contract from Communities & Local Government. Landlords and letting agents wishing to use this scheme are required to register with the Scheme Administrator. They can find out more and register by visiting www.mydeposits.co.uk. Registered members of the Scheme are able to protect and unprotect deposits at the beginning and end of tenancies. Fees are tax-deductible. In the event of a dispute at the end of the tenancy agreement, both parties are offered access to alternative dispute resolution (ADR). This procedure will be evidence-based, relying on documentation and records.