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Estate agency offers to return £20m of deposits to tenants

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28 Jan 2019

News -Story -24.7.17


One of the UK's biggest estate agency groups has announced they are offering to return more than £20million worth of deposits to tenants willing to sign up to a deposit-free scheme.


Haart has teamed up with flatfair to encourage more tenants to sign up to its new deposit-free rental model in return for what the estate agency described as the “biggest ever return of tenancy deposits in UK history”.


Haart partnered with flatfair last April to provide new tenants with the option of paying a one-off fee equivalent to a week’s rent instead of a deposit.


Haart is now extending the offer to existing tenants who can get their full deposit back in exchange for opting in.


Under the schemes, tenants remain liable for any lawful claims for damage or repairs when they leave their property. Landlords benefit from what Haart describe as “better protection” covering rent arrears and dilapidations.


Zero deposit renting continues to grow and schemes like flatfair’s are likely to become increasingly popular with landlords when the Government’s proposal to cap tenancy deposits to just five weeks come into play.


Advocates say the schemes make renting more affordable for those already hard-pressed for cash between tenancies. But critics point out that most tenants get their full deposit back at the end of a lease - unlike the policy which is non-refundable.


Spicerhaart CEO, Paul Smith said: “It’s more important to us than ever that we offer landlords the highest level of protection on the market and that’s exactly what flatfair provides, while benefiting tenants at the same time. It’s a win-win.”


Flatfair CEO, Franz Doerr, added: “We hope to put millions of pounds that are pointlessly locked away back in the pockets of tenants across the UK, while providing landlords with the cover they need.”


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