When should agents and landlords send Prescribed Information to tenants?
The Tenancy Deposit Scheme (TDS) was asked if deposit Prescribed Information could be sent earlier or later than 30 days. Here's its response for letting agents and landlords.
The rules of serving Prescribed Information (PI) are very specific - and can catch you out later down the road if you don't share them at the right time to stay compliant. Can the PI be sent earlier or later than 30 days? And if so, what does that mean for the agent or landlord?
What is Prescribed Information?
Prescribed Information is a specific set of information that you are legally obliged to provide your tenant(s) and anyone who paid the deposit on behalf of the tenant - classed as relevant persons - including the following information:
- The deposit amount
- The address of the property
- The full contact details of the tenancy deposit scheme of where the deposit is held
- The full contact details of the landlord, tenants and any guarantor or relevant person who contributed to the deposit.
The PI can be a separate document or included within the tenancy agreement.
What are your obligations after securing the deposit?
In addition to the tenancy deposit being protected within 30 days of receipt, landlords or agents must also:
- Provide the How to Rent Guide
- Provide a valid EPC certificate when applicable.
- Provide up to date gas and electrical safety certificates as needed,
- Ensure the home is fitted with smoke and carbon dioxide alarms, and finally
- Provide specific information relating to the deposit (the Prescribed Information)
Can serving PI early or late affect your rights?
The time-critical checklist above needs to be followed when dealing with tenancy deposits, and the deadlines are in place to keep you legally compliant.
Sending this too late, or too early, could mean unfortunate consequences for agents and landlords who can not only receive a penalty between 1 and 3 times the value of the deposit, but can lose the ability to gain possession of their properties and issue a section 21.
What happens if you serve the PI incorrectly?
Suppose the Prescribed Information is not served within those 30 days of the receipt of the deposit, or there is no evidence that it has been served.
In that case, a landlord or agent should serve their tenant with a copy of this certificate to rectify the mistake, and certainly before serving a section 21 notice, if required.
You can read more about serving the document (or the deposit) too late in this guide.
Where can you find more information?
You can download leaflets from the TDS Prescribed Information resources, which comes with details of your deposit pre-populated if you're using our free TDS Custodial scheme.