As you may have noticed, we’ve been working on exciting changes to our service which will make it much simpler and easier to use.
We’ve developed improvements to our existing features and added a whole host of new ones, all aimed at making our service better and faster for you. We’ve designed it based on your feedback, and have been piloting the new features with a selected number of letting agents and landlords to ensure it’s as easy to use as possible.
We’ve also changed some of our deposit statuses to make them clearer for you. You can find them explained in our glossary.
This overview tells you what’s changed, but if you need any more help, please contact us and we’ll be happy to guide you. If you benefit from our account managed service, please get in touch with your account manager in the first instance.
You no longer need to name a lead tenant
You told us the concept of a lead tenant didn’t work as well as it could. So we’ve removed it and instead allowed tenants to view the tenancy and update their personal details. They’ll also choose between themselves who’s responsible for managing their side of the repayment process. Instead of naming a lead tenant at the start of a tenancy, we’ll create an account for each tenant you add. They’ll need to activate their account and use this to review the tenancy and the deposit.
At the end of the tenancy, they decide between themselves who’ll manage the repayment process. We’ll send an email to all parties confirming who’s been chosen as nominated tenant.
We’ll be applying this to your existing tenancies as we move them to our new service platform. Any lead tenants that are currently named will be removed from that role and your tenants will need to agree who’ll take the role of nominated tenant when required to.
We can automatically allocate direct bank transfers to your deposits
When you set up a bank transfer payment to pay us a deposit, we'll ask you to create a payment reference. When you send the payment from your bank account, as long as the payment reference and the amount are exactly the same, we will automatically allocate the payment to your deposit - meaning less admin time for you.
We recommend you always create a reference for payments, but if you don’t, don’t worry, you’ll still be able to manually allocate payments to deposits.
Our dispute resolution process is faster and simpler
To speed up the repayment of any undisputed amount, we’ll now ask you to state all deductions you wish to make against a deposit in one claim. For example, if the deposit total is £1000 and you are claiming £200 for carpet damages, this amount will be in dispute and will be kept until the dispute is resolved. The remaining £800 will be paid straight back to the tenant.
When making a claim, we’ll ask each party if they would like to use our free dispute resolution service. If you both consent to dispute resolution you have 14 calendar days to submit your evidence before the case is passed to our independent adjudicators.
You can print your own Statutory Declaration
If you’re in need of a Statutory Declaration, you can now pre-populate your details in our online template and print it out wherever you are, so there’s no more waiting for the Declaration via the post. You’ll still need to send it back to us in the post once you’ve had it signed by a witness.
You can now print your certificate of deposit protection
Rather than us sending out deposit certificates, you can now download them from your account. It means you can see proof of your deposit being protected at the click of a button. If you misplace your certificate, just log back into your online account and print a new one off.
Tenants can now enjoy a more secure login with fewer details to remember
We're now creating accounts for all tenants on a tenancy using their email address and a password. This means we’ll no longer need them to confirm their identity using a Repayment ID. It also means it’s vital you provide an email address or mobile number for all tenants on a tenancy.
Changing tenants on a tenancy
If you need to change tenants on a tenancy, you can ask us to remove an outgoing tenant and replace them with an incoming tenant. You can also add additional tenants or remove individual tenants from a tenancy. We'll notify the outgoing tenant you're removing them and they have 7 days to let us know if this is correct. If we don't hear from them we'll go ahead and make the change you've requested.*
This feature can’t be used when you want to repay or claim some of the deposit.
*If a tenant is leaving the tenancy, make sure you don’t want to keep any part of the outgoing tenant’s deposit. Any exchange of deposits between the incoming and outgoing tenant must be performed outside of the scheme. If you want to make a claim against the outgoing tenants deposit you can’t use this process. You’ll need to use the normal deposit repayment process to make a claim. You’ll also need to re-protect the deposit for the remaining tenants and any new tenants.
A relevant person is someone who has paid the deposit, or part of the deposit, on behalf of the tenants. We now capture this information when you lodge a deposit, where we didn't previously do so. They'll be provided with a copy of the certificate of deposit protection. This means if a local authority has paid a deposit on behalf of a tenant, for example, they have proof they’ve done this. They’re not authorised to discuss the deposit with us, or take any action in relation to the deposit, such as claiming it back - they'll need to speak to the tenant to discuss this.