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Tenancy Deposit Protection – arbitrations and inventories


I have recieved an interesting e-circular from the Deposit Protection Service. It is essentially correcting a circular they sent earlier to dissociate themselves from a company. However apparently they also said in that earlier circular:

“The DPS would recommend landlords obtain an independent Inventory because one conducted by a landlord or agent would not be considered independent in the event of a dispute”.

This has obviously caused behind the scenes problems, and no doubt vociferous complaints on behalf of landlords unwilling to incur (or unable to afford) the additional expense of an inventory clerk, as they now say:

“With regard to the statement concerning the validity of self-produced inventories, The DPS wishes to make clear that its Adjudication Service is obligated to consider all evidence placed before it when considering a Dispute and that there is no reason why an Inventory properly produced by a landlord or agent, which is duly signed by all parties in the correct way, should not be considered entirely valid.”

However, notwithstanding this, I think the first statement is very telling, and probably reflects the real attitude taken towards landlords’ own inventories. Landlords should take note therefore that independent inventories conducted by an inventory clerk are likely to be given greater weight at arbitrations than one done by themselves.

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About the post author:

Tessa Shepperson

Tessa is a lawyer and specialises in creating products and services which help landlords and letting agents learn and understand landlord & tenant law. For example, she runs the Landlord Law website (now in its 14th year) and is a director of Easy Law Training Ltd and Your Law Store. Tessa also sits on the Property Redress Scheme Council. When not working she enjoys reading, cooking and messing around on the computer. You can also find her on Google

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Tessa is an English lawyer specialising in residential landlord and tenant law.

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