Deposits and Tenancy Deposit Schemes (England) | England | Start of a Tenancy (England)

HMO tenant wants to pay deposit 25th May but move in around 1st may

29 Apr 2021 | 2 comments

Hi Guildy,


I have a tenant that wants to move in to my HMO in London after me looking for new tenant for 5 months one snag he wants to move in around 1st May paying 1st rent but is asking to pay the deposit around the 25th May, I know this is not ideal but i’m a bit tempted as I need the money to pay mortgage and bills etc and been waiting such a long time to fill the room as added difficulty local Hammersmith Bridge is closed down for stuctural repair i’ve had 4 tenants turn the room down for this reason. I would appreciate any advice and feedback on this matter as often your viewpoint sheds some helpful light on these kind of matters from your long valued experience.

thank you,




  1. guildy

    You’re right to be concerned and getting a deposit late often ends in trouble.

    If they’re unable to get the money together now indicates they are struggling anyway so it might be the rent will be difficult to get from them especially for June when they’ve just paid the deposit. That is if they pay the deposit then!

    That being said, you never know and you can only do what the market allows.

    However, it can be cheaper to have an empty property than an occupied one who isn’t paying!

  2. holborn1977

    I work on a landlord advice line. Unfortunately, it’s not unusual for tenants who don’t pay their deposit before moving to not only fail to pay it at all, but later claim they paid it in cash and sue the landlord for not protecting it. Deposit protection legislation being as strict on landlords as it is, landlords in that position are often forced to “return” the deposit the tenant didn’t pay in the first place to avoid legal action by the tenant or at least mitigate the award to the tenant.

    I agree with Guildy; you are much better off with an empty room than one occupied by a non paying tenant and such tenants are more likely to cause other trouble too. Also, you may find demand picks up after lockdown eases and failing that, you could consider advertising the room as a holiday let. It is legal to let residential property in Greater London as holiday accommodation for up 3 months within a year (after which planning permission is required).

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