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Young adults and students are often losing their deposits and being subjected to surprise evictions according to a report by the Mail on Sunday.
Rogue landlords were found to be routinely and illegally withholding deposits and subjecting tenants to surprise evictions, with young adults and students the most likely to suffer from the rogue practices.
Evidence from multiple sources points to landlords regularly flouting existing laws – particularly when it comes to returning money stumped up as a deposit. This money should be placed in an impartial scheme.
Research from Nationwide Building Society indicated that half of students do not get their full deposit back while at university and that they lose an average £150.
Eight in ten of young adults and students say their money was withheld unfairly.
Further research by comparison website comparethemarket revealed that a third of renters know their landlords have not safely tucked away deposits in a protection scheme. One fifth claimed they did not even have a formal contract to rent their properties.
Citizens Advice have claimed that half of renters are only shown their tenancy agreement after they have already put money down on the rental property.
With the main victims seeming to be young adults and students, it is often left to their parents to battle with the rogue landlords in order to retrieve deposit monies paid.
Polly Neate, chief executive of homelessness charity Shelter, said: ‘Every day our advisers hear from people trying to navigate the common pitfalls of renting – from unprotected deposits and unfair terms in tenancy agreements, to dangerous conditions.’
Chris Norris, of the National Landlords Association, advised that although most landlords are respectable and ‘good people’, tenants should make their own checks before renting a property.
He said: ‘Check that the landlord or letting agent is a member of an organisation such as the NLA or the UK Association of Letting Agents.’