Most tenancies run smoothly and any issues which arise can be easily addressed between the tenant and landlord, often with the help of the letting agent. However, from time-to-time issues can become more entrenched and threaten the continuation of the tenancy.  How do you go about resolving these issues to the satisfaction of both parties so that the tenancy can continue?

Your first action is to make sure that reasonable attempts have been made to resolve the matter. Communicate clearly and try to understand the situation of the other party to find an acceptable solution. If that doesn’t result in an agreement, mediation may be an option available to you.

TDS Resolution (which is operated by the Dispute Service) is a free mediation and conciliation service for tenants and landlords that aims to facilitate a satisfactory resolution between the parties to help sustain tenancies and avoid the need for formal legal action. The service is provided in association with the NRLA (National Residential Landlords Association).

The scope of the service was broadened on 1 April 2021 to cover most common disputes arising during a tenancy including:?

  • Property standards
  • Repairs
  • Entry rights
  • Rent arrears
  • Threatened evictions
  • Breach of tenancy terms
  • Noise/Anti-social behaviour (except serious anti-social activity)

Not to be confused with the adjudication service offered to resolve end-of-tenancy deposit disputes, this service from TDS Resolution is focused on the disagreements that occur during a tenancy.

The success of the service is down to the experience of the team who are skilled at resolving disputes between landlords and tenants. The Dispute Service staff typically deal with over 20,000 tenancy deposit dispute resolutions each year and increasingly these are being resolved through early mediation without having to go to a full adjudication decision.

The entire TDS Resolution process is straightforward to use and involves just four simple steps:

  • The landlord or tenant completes a Resolution Referral Form via the website here.
  • Providing the case can be taken forward, TDS Resolution will contact the other party within 5 working days.
  • If the other party agrees to engage in the process, a resolution meeting is arranged with a mediator and the parties.  The mediation session may involve the parties meeting online with the mediator, or may take place by telephone, with the mediator speaking to each party separately.  The sessions are confidential and the mediator’s role is to facilitate agreement.  They will not impose a solution. 
  • Agreements are confirmed in writing to the tenant and landlord after the session.

You can find out more about how it works on the Dispute Service website.

If you would like to know more about end of tenancy disputes, please visit the TDS Information Lounge for a wide range of guides, blogs and case studies.

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About Tenancy Deposit Scheme (TDS)

Tenancy Deposit Scheme (TDS) is a Government-approved scheme for the protection of tenancy deposits; TDS offers both Insured and Custodial protection and provides fair adjudication for disputes that arise over the tenancy deposits that we protect.

We provide invaluable training in tenancy deposit protection and disputes for agents and landlords through the TDS Academy as well as joining with MOL to provide the Technical Award in Residential Tenancy Deposits.

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

These views are those of the author alone and do not necessarily reflect the view of TDS, its officers and employees.

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