What can my landlord deduct money for from my deposit?

The deposit is your money and the landlord will need to provide reasons and evidence to support any deductions. They can also only make deductions that have been stated in your housing contract.

Examples of expenses could be:

  • the cost of removing rubbish from in or outside the house
  • any outstanding rent - one to watch on joint tenancies
  • the cost of replacing keys if you don’t return all sets
  • re-decoration costs, for example, if a room’s been painted without permission
  • the cost of cleaning the property to return it to a 'lettable' condition
  • repairing damage to fixtures and fittings like furniture or carpets
  • repairing damage to the property, for example, broken windows
  • the landlord can make additional charges if there are specific clauses in your contract such as administration charges for late rent

A landlord has to show what it has cost them to get the property back to a rentable standard. The expenses must be reasonable, and the landlord must show you the invoices or receipts.

The landlord can’t charge for 'fair and wear' (a landlord phrase) throughout the tenancy. This is the natural depreciation of things like carpets and decor which may need replacing after a certain length of time.