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Notably, this can occur where the tenant has not been properly informed of the basis onwhich the deposit is held (often because it is not even clear between landlord and agent),or where there is a suspicion that both landlord and agent are using the existence of theother as a delaying tactic.Either the landlord/agent returns thedeposit in full, Google Local Marketing Services without argument or delay, or the tenant withholds their last months rentwith the agreement of the landlord/agent, or both parties agree on the amount of depositto be returned or retained.

It should be noted that the amount of money owed toone party or the other could be in a range of a few pounds (e.g. where a small cleaningcharge is cited) to hundreds of pounds e.g. where carpet replacement is cited or where adeposit is withheld without reason, with either the tenant or the landlord/agent beingthe loser.Issuing a claim for the average deposit of £510 would cost the claimant £80, with apossible further £45 payable to issue a warrant of execution.Apartfrom these issues of time and expense claimants may fail on procedural issues, or be unableto enforce the judgement.

Some of the problems leading to disputes at the end of tenancies could never beresolved the Government cannot legislate for human obstinacy.Therefore SEH 2001-02 shows that in the previous three years, 20% of respondentsconsidered that the landlord/agent from their most recent tenancy had retained too muchof the deposit.This suggests that in a three-year period, a deposit-paying tenant in the PRS has at least a one infive chance of having some or all of their deposit unreasonably in their opinion withheld.

The more times they move within the PRS, the more likely they are to have this experience.Work conducted for the DETR by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) OmnibusSurvey in February-April 1998 involved a smaller but more random sample.The surveyidentified 322 people who had moved out of privately rented accommodation in theprevious 3-5 years, of whom three- quarters had paid a deposit.As part of its evaluation of the pilot Tenancy Deposit Scheme (TDS), York Universitycarried out a postal survey of the private tenants in the pilot TDS.