Agent bankrupt- deposit issue

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    Agent bankrupt- deposit issue

    Hi all, my first time here and am after an answer to an unusual situation.

    I have 1 property since last year rented out via an agent. I have recently been informed that the agent has gone bankrupt. I was owed a months rent at the time which I have lost but am ok with that. However i was told the deposits were not affected. When I checked it seemed that the money the tenant gave them was never put into a deposit scheme. The tenant has filled out a claim form for the deposit but there is alegedly no funds. In an effort tp put things right as it was unfortunate for the tenant I was going to sort a new deposit with a dps but now she tells me that instead of the month which i asssumed it was it was more. The figure she has given to me is not a month or even a month and a half but something in between. I have asked if she has a recipt and I am waiting. In this unusual scenario I know that as landlord I am ultimately responsible but someone else has told me that it is tenant who has to put up new deposit and am confused. Legally how do I stand if she cant find a receipt and even if she does I dont know if that money was also payment towards agents searches etc.?

    #2
    The conventional view is that as landlord you are responsible to "return" the deposit to the tenant, even if you never received it.
    The tenant will have to show you somehow how much they paid (but it should be documented in the tenancy agreement).

    You can then try and recover the sums from the agents.
    Last edited by jpkeates; 21-01-2016, 13:58 PM. Reason: Spelling
    When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
    Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

    Comment


      #3
      As it was not protected the tenant may sue you for up to 3x deposit also: Yes, even if agent should have done so, yes even if that is in the agreement between you & bankrupt agent..
      I am legally unqualified: If you need to rely on advice check it with a suitable authority - eg a solicitor specialising in landlord/tenant law...

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by hills90210 View Post
        ...but someone else has told me that it is tenant who has to put up new deposit and am confused.
        This is not true. Be confused no more.

        It is often the case that a deposit is a slightly higher amount than the monthly rent is - for the Agent who does Tenant Find for me, it's £100 more. If there are pets, then it could be £200 or £250 more. So the Tenant's assertion is perfectly feasible and although you have done the right thing in asking for a receipt, it's also perfectly possible this Agent didn't provide the Tenant with one - in those circumstances I would err on the side of the Tenant being completely truthful with you. For you to not even know what amount of deposit was taken is a little bit "hands-off" shall we say... others might say "incompetent", as it's an exposure for you.

        Comment


          #5
          http://www.property118.com/private-p...ons-ltd/83804/
          Interesting article about what you can do if an agent "diverts" rent or deposits.
          When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
          Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

          Comment


            #6
            As JPK says, first check for evidence that a deposit was actually paid as a security against damage to the property. Whilst i have sympathy for the tenant, if there is no evidence but you voluntarily accept to the tenant that one was paid, you may open yourself up to bigger problems.

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by hills90210 View Post
              I was owed a months rent at the time which I have lost but am ok with that.
              I don't think that is OK. The rent was never the agent's money. Sounds criminal, as jpkeates points out in post #5.
              There is a fine line between irony and stupidity. If I say something absurd please assume that I am being facetious.

              Comment


                #8
                Indeed: In your shoes I'd find out where he lives & go and discuss the matter with him....
                I am legally unqualified: If you need to rely on advice check it with a suitable authority - eg a solicitor specialising in landlord/tenant law...

                Comment


                  #9
                  Get yourself registered as a creditor with the appointed Receiver.

                  Comment

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