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McCausland appoints Northern Ireland’s first Tenancy Deposit Scheme administrators

Minister for Social Development, Nelson McCausland has announced the appointment of four administrators to operate new Tenancy Deposit Schemes in Northern Ireland.
Monday, 4 February 2013

The Assembly recently approved legislation requiring an independent third party scheme to protect tenant’s deposits from 1 April 2013.

Speaking about the scheme, Minister McCausland said: “Tenants across Northern Ireland can now be afforded the same protection as those in Great Britain. This scheme will provide assurances for tenants and protection for landlords helping to minimise long drawn out legal proceedings and disputes.

“Return of tenant deposits is an issue I hear of time and time again and I’m pleased that Northern Ireland citizens can now be reassured their money is safe.

“The new scheme will be operational from 1 April and will encourage a more professional approach to tenancy deposit practice, minimise disputes and go some way to improving the sector’s reputation as a desirable option.”

Four organisations have been successful in their application to provide both custodial and insurance schemes in Northern Ireland and have been appointed as scheme administrators. These four organisations are My Deposits; The Dispute Service (TDS); Letting Protection Service (LPS), and Capita.

Tenancy Deposit Schemes ensure good practice in deposit handling so that when a tenant pays a deposit and is entitled to get it back, they can be assured that this will happen. The scheme will also assist with the resolution of disputes by having a Dispute Resolution mechanism.

Notes to editors:

  1. There will be no cost to the Department for Social Development for the setting up of Tenancy Deposit Schemes in Northern Ireland.
  2. The administrators have been appointed for up to five years with the option of an extension.
  3. The legislation provides for two types of schemes to operate:

    a. Custodial Scheme where the full deposit is handed over to the scheme administrators

    b. Insurance scheme where the landlord holds on to the deposit and pays a fee and any contribution towards insurance to the scheme administrators.

    c. In total four applications were submitted to administer the scheme. Each administrator appointed fully satisfied the comprehensive list of qualifying criteria.
  4. Media enquiries to DSD Communications Team on 028 9082 9494 or e-mail press.office@dsdni.gov.uk. Out of office hours please contact the Duty Press Officer via pager number 07699 715440 and your call will be returned.