We have recently introduced a brand new tool for landlords and letting agents to use at the end of a tenancy, should they find themselves needing to make a claim on the deposit.

We deal with over 3,500 tenancy disputes each year and our Proposal for deductions from the tenancy deposit template has been created to help landlords and agents set out their case for any deductions in a transparent way.

The template requires the landlord or agent to properly structure the deposit deduction proposal and to ensure that they are able to make a deduction, and that evidence is available. This helps the tenant see that the landlord is justified in making a deduction and that there is evidence to support this. On the other hand, if the landlord or agent does not have evidence to support a claim it will become obvious if the form is used correctly and this should help to prevent unsuccessful claims being made.

So how does the template work?

You can find the template here and we've produced this detailed guide to using it, but here are the key points:

- The template is an editable PDF, which means you can type your responses directly into the form and save it.

- The first section is the summary of proposed deductions, where you would set out the deductions you wish to make from the deposit and confirm which documents you have to support your claim.

- Your claim may relate to one or multiple issues. The categories of cleaning, damage, redecoration, gardening, rent arrears and other miscellaneous claims each have a page where you can fill in the necessary details.

- On the individual category pages you will be asked to indicate what deductions you are claiming for, what clause(s) in the tenancy agreement support your claim, evidence of the issue (e.g. difference in cleanliness at the beginning and end of tenancy) and evidence supporting the value of the claim.

- Once completed you can send the form to the tenant, who can add their own comments.

- To support a claim you will need to have certain documents available to send to the tenant depending on the nature of the claim, such as the tenancy agreement, inventory, check in and check out reports, rent statements, invoices and estimates. Without the relevant documents it is likely that you will not succeed in making a tenancy deposit deduction claim.

- If the tenant agrees with all of the deductions you can apply for repayment of the deposit, reflecting the agreement reached. If some of the deductions are agreed, it is worth investing more time in trying to reach an agreement on the outstanding item(s) before approaching us for repayment of the deposit.

- If full agreement cannot be reached, we recommend that you start the repayment process. We will pay out any agreed sums from the deposit and help you reach agreement where possible. If it is necessary to adjudicate on the dispute, you will be asked to provide evidence and the completed form can be uploaded to the evidence portal as part of that process.

While the ideal scenario for the end of any tenancy is that no claims on the deposit are required, we appreciate that sometimes it happens and hope that this new tool will help make the process more straightforward and transparent for all parties concerned. The template was initially rolled out at our recent adjudication workshops and we have received great feedback.

If you have any queries about the template, contact us on info@safedepositsscotland.com or 03333 213 136.