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Since 6th April 2007 any deposit taken from a tenant as part of an Assured Shorthold Tenancy (either by a landlord directly or a managing agent) must be protected by lodgment in a Tenancy Deposit Scheme. Under the legislation, if private landlords fail to protect the tenant's deposit using these schemes, they may have to pay the tenant up to three times the value of the deposit. It’s essential to lodge any deposit with these schemes as soon as possible.
New rules requiring landlords to serve additional relevant information to all new tenants in order to be eligible to serve Section 21(1) or Section 21(4) notices were introduced in October 2015. New legally enforceable regulations about the installation of smoke and carbon monoxide alarms are also now live as from that date, as is the need to provide a valid Energy Performance Certificate.
Another consequence of the Deregulation Act 2015 (section 33) is to end so-called 'retaliatory eviction'. if the tenant makes a complaint about repairs, a landlord must give an 'adequate response' within 14 days stating (preferably in writing) what he is going to do to resolve the problem and the time limit proposed for dealing with it.
If the repairs are not done, the tenant can complain to the local authority which will then serve a notice on the landlord meaning a Section 21 notice cannot be served for six months.