John King, Director of Customer Service, explains what the updated guide means for landlords and agents and how they can remain compliant.

On January 17, the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government (formerly, the Department for Communities and Local Government) updated its How to Rent guide, the document tenants should receive from their landlord (or agent) before they enter into any agreement to rent a property under an Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST) in England.

As a landlord or agent, you should ensure that you serve the latest version of the guide on all new tenancies and keep a clear record of when the document was provided to tenants; this is crucial as you may need to rely on that evidence at a later date as part of the new Section 21 legislation.

If an older version of the guide is given to tenants, Section 21 eviction processes may be hampered. The rules aren’t retrospective, but it does apply to anyone preparing to enter a new AST tenancy in England.

The updated How to Rent guide can be downloaded here. The Ministry of Housing Communities & Local Government also provides information on how and when the tenancy guide should be supplied.

The private rented sector is fast-paced, so it’s important for landlords and agents to keep up-to-date with the latest regulations. We try to publicise changes on our blog, but there is also a wealth of information on the Government’s website and other online sources.

Our dedicated customer service team can provide support on all deposit-related enquiries. You can reach the team on 0300 037 1000, email or live-chat at

The Tenancy Deposit Scheme (TDS) is a government approved scheme for the protection of tenancy deposits; TDS offers both insured and custodial protection and also provide fair adjudication for disputes that arise over the tenancy deposits that we protect.

TDS can only comment on the process for this scheme, other deposit protection schemes may have a different process/require different steps. Content is correct at the time of writing.

1st February 2018

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