What is the Landlord allowed take from deposit?

Each tenancy agreement is likely to contain different terms about what the landlord can withhold part of your deposit for. This is why it is very important that you fully understand these terms before signing the tenancy agreement in the first place.
However, if there are terms in the agreement that are ‘unfair’, you will not be legally bound by these terms in any event. Examples of unfair terms include:

  • Allowing the landlord to change the terms of the agreement whenever they choose
  • Making the tenant responsible for paying for structural repairs to the property
  • Allowing the landlord to come round to the property when they like without giving notice.

Reasonable deductions: The landlord is allowed to make reasonable deductions from your deposit. For example:

  • Money to cover any damage done to the property by the tenants
  • Unpaid rent
  • Cleaning

If making a deduction from your deposit, the landlord should inform you how much the deduction will be and the reasons why.

Unlawful deductions: Your landlord can only withhold part or all of your deposit for financial losses suffered that were the tenant’s responsibility. For example, the landlord would not be able to withhold money for the following:

  • Unpaid utility bills – this is a matter between the utility company and tenant
  • Agency or advertising fees for re-letting the property (unless the tenancy was not ended properly by the tenant)
  • Breaches of the tenancy agreement that are not financial (e.g. that a pet stayed in the property.)

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