It looks like you're using IE11...
This browser offers limited functionality on our website. We recommend you use the latest version of Chrome, Safari, Edge and Firefox.
A tenancy deposit is money which your landlord may ask you to pay when you start to rent a house, as protection against damages to the property or for unpaid rent. It must be protected in a Tenancy Deposit Scheme.
Deposits for tenancies outside Northern Ireland or deposits paid before 1 April 2013 do not have to be protected.
Any deposit for a private tenancy taken by a landlord or agent must be protected in an approved tenancy deposit scheme.
For any deposit paid between 1 April 2013 and 31st March 2023:
It must be protected in an approved scheme within 14 days of it being paid.
The prescribed information about the scheme must be given to the tenant, within 28 days of the landlord receiving the deposit.
For any deposit paid after 1 April 2023:
It must be protected in an approved scheme within 28 days of it being paid.
The prescribed information about the scheme must be given to the tenant, within 35 days of the landlord receiving the deposit.
There are two types of deposit scheme:
The three appointed scheme administrators in Northern Ireland are:
We enforce the scheme for all private rentals in the Belfast City Council area.
If we find a landlord or agent holding a deposit which has not been secured in one of the three approved schemes we can issue them with a fixed penalty that is three times the value of the deposit taken.
The fixed penalty for taking a deposit other than money will be determined by the council and cannot exceed £500.
Any Tenancy Deposit paid after 1st April 2023, cannot be in excess of 1 Month’s rent.
Failure to comply with the above requirements is now a continuous offence throughout any period during which the offence occurs.
Landlords must provide a receipt for rent paid in cash. It must be given when payment is made or as soon as reasonably possible, and should contain:
Separate receipts must be given for part payments.
You can report a landlord or agent for not complying by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or call 028 9027 0428.
For more information about the tenancy deposit scheme visit nidirect (link opens in new window).
For more information and advice, get in touch.
Cecil Ward Building, 4-10 Linenhall Street, Belfast BT2 8BP