We previously reported some regulations that had been laid in the National Assembly for Wales in relation to specified information requirements for holding deposits in Wales.

The proposed commencement was 13 December 2019.

It has just been announced that those regulations are revoked as of today (10 December 2019) and a new set of regulations have been laid. The Renting Homes (Fees etc.) (Holding Deposit) (Specified Information) (Wales) Regulations 2019 are similar in nature but do make some changes that are worthy of comment.

In addition to the changes and assuming they are passed in current form, the new regulations will commence from 28 February 2020.

The changes to the new regulations are as follows.

In the previous regulations, the following contact information for the landlord and agent was required:

the name, address, telephone and any e-mail of the landlord and agent (if one)

However, this is now changed to:

  • where a holding deposit is to be paid to a letting agent, the name and contact details of that letting agent,
  • where a holding deposit is to be paid to a landlord, the name and contact details of that landlord,

This means where an agent has been instructed, the landlord details are no longer necessary.

Also, only the “name” and “contact details” are specified.

It was previously going to be a requirement to provide the –

nature and duration of the contract;

This has changed to just the duration of the contract (nature of the contract being removed).

Under the old version, it was a requirement to provide details of proposed additional or modifications and exclusions to contract terms. This has been slightly changed but doesn’t apply to assured shorthold tenancies. This is something to deal with when occupation contracts are introduced in Wales replacing assured shorthold tenancies. The revised wording of what must be provided is:

any proposed additional contract terms or proposed modifications to fundamental or supplementary terms or terms proposed to be omitted from the contract,

Essentially, it’s the part where terms are proposed to be omitted which has been added. The new contracts (when introduced) will be based on a model agreement so it makes sense to also include anything proposed to be omitted.

The final change is the method of service of this specified information. Under the old regulations, it was possible to post the information before receiving a holding deposit. However, posting has now been removed and now the only way to serve is in person or electronically if the prospective tenant consents.

The information must be provided to a prospective contract-holder in writing and may be given in person or provided by electronic means if the prospective contract-holder consents to receiving it electronically.

Everything else not mentioned above remains the same as it was and our main article about the specified information requirements for a holding deposit has been updated to reflect these changes.

We had already created a holding deposit form in preparation for 13 December but this will now need changing! It’s perfectly fine to continue to use in its current form because there’s no specified information requirements until 28 February 2020. We will be updating soon for the new version of the regulations.