Landlords Beware of using holding deposit service

Landlord be aware of the risks of using the “rent now” service which involves the prospective tenant sending OpenRent the holding deposit.

I sent the tenant this message:

"You will need to meet this referencing criteria. Please ensure you will.

• a written reference from a landlord or managing agent if the tenant currently or has previously rented a property
confirming no instances of rent arrears or neglect at that property;
• a written reference from a current employer which confirms gross annual salary and a permanent employment
status (if the tenant or guarantor is self-employed, proof of income for the last 12 months must be provided by
their accountant or legal representative);
• confirmation that the tenant’s (or their guarantor’s) gross annual salary or income is at least 30 times the
proposed monthly rent;
• a credit history check confirming an acceptable risk or credit score which reveals no County Court Judgments,
bankruptcies or adverse financial features"

The tenant has replied:

“I am good to provide relevant documents for referencing”

Tenant has then failed referencing as not able to provide a landlord referencing. When claiming on the holding deposit the person in charge has felt the tenant has not lied???

You have no control over this aspect and the decision is made for you by someone who appears underqualified to adjudicate.

Why do you think theyve lied?

They said they were able to provide the referencing documents, in this case the landlord reference but then failed to provide one

The landlord may have just declined. They wouldnt necessarily know that in advance. I think youre rushing to judgement too hastily.

to be fair to the OP David, they did say that they could supply the docs and then failed to. On that basis, I think the OP has a case. Shelter says the holding deposit can be kept if the applicant were to “give wrong information or tell them something that is false”. They seem to have done this.

Yes, but they may have said it in good faith. The landlord could have agreed and then failed to deliver. I guess the OP could ask OR to pass him the deposit and see if the applicant sues. It would then be up a judge/the tribunal.

I would love for the tenant to consider legal action but open rent have made the decision for me which is why I wont be bothering to use their deposit service.

I would happily defend a claim but I am not going to start a claim myself. This is a battle not worth having for me. I have learnt my lesson and will adjust.

The responsibility is on the tenant to ensure the information they provide is correct. Would I have offered them the place if they said they were unsure their landlord could provide a reference? No is the answer.

I always have complete control over all monies. I have had many applicants tell lies wasting my time, money and loss of rent, if OR or any other org has the money they invariably rule against the LL. Same with deposits,I use an insured scheme and keep the cash, it once took the DPS 18 months and a lot of hassle on my part to get them to pay me the deposit when a tenant left my flat like a bomb site, I dont trust anyone.