The Dispute Service is a not for profit company providing a range of services across the UK
Tenancy deposit protection and dispute resolution
Our main business is tenancy deposit protection and free dispute resolution and we provide this across the UK through our various subsidiary organisations.
Training and guidance
We provide training, information and guidance on an impartial basis on all matters related to tenancy deposits and disputes.
Dispute resolution service
We are highly skilled in dispute resolution and deal with over 20,000 tenancy deposit disputes a year. The skills and experience we have developed was behind our decision in 2020 to launch TDS Resolution; an impartial service aimed at helping landlords and tenants deal with rent arrears related disputes.
We also provide dispute resolution services for Zero Deposit; a deposit replacement guarantee product.
Raising standards in the private rented sector
TDS is committed to raising standards in the private rented sector and making sure that tenants and landlords are better educated about their respective rights and responsibilities.
We fund our two linked charities [TDS Charitable Foundation and the SafeDeposits Scotland Charitable Trust] to provide grants to organisations across the UK which aim to raise standards in the private rented sector.
We are also planning to launch a new Inventory product in the near future to help both landlords and tenants have confidence in the condition of a property at the start and end of a tenancy.
Client Money Protection
Letting Agents are required to have Client Money Protection [CMP] in place and TDS has teamed up with Propertymark to offer Client Money Protection through Money Shield.
The Dispute Service is a Complaint Handler member of the Ombudsman Association.
Tenancy Deposit Protection
England and Wales
Tenancy Deposit Scheme; we provide both Custodial and Insurance-backed deposit protection [where we are the largest scheme] and currently protect 1.45m deposits and adjudicate with about 16,000 disputes a year.
SafeDeposits Scotland is the largest Custodial scheme in Scotland. It currently protects over 137,000 deposits and resolves 3,500 disputes a year.
TDS Northern Ireland operates both a Custodial and Insurance-backed scheme in Northern Ireland and is the largest scheme with an 83% market share with some 50,000 deposits protected and resolves about 500 disputes each year.
TDS Resolution is a conciliation/mediation service that aims to facilitate a satisfactory resolution between landlords and tenants without further action. The service is free and intends to secure mutually acceptable agreements between landlords and tenants to allow tenancies to continue.
SDS Resolution is a free and impartial service funded by SafeDeposits Scotland to help landlords and tenants across the private rented sector in Scotland.
TDS Charitable Foundation
This is a charity supported by TDS which aims to raise standards in the private rented sector. Formed in 2014 it provides grants to a range of organisations.
SafeDeposits Scotland Charitable Trust
This charity is supported and funded by SafeDeposits and like the sister charity in England it aims to raise standards in the Scottish private rented sector.
Money Shield Client Money Protection
Money Shield is a Client Money Protection product for Lettings Agents and is owned by Propertymark and The Dispute Service.
The Dispute Service has long recognised the importance of an accurate and comprehensive inventory to minimise the number of tenancy deposit disputes. It’s also very important that tenants are able to review and comment on the inventory and for these comments to be recorded.
We’re now working closely with Inventory Hive an industry leading provider of inventory software, to ensure that inventory clerks, letting agents and landlords have access to an easy to use software solution that, if used properly, should reduce tenancy deposit disputes.
End of Tenancy Solutions
We encourage landlords and lettings agents to stay in touch with tenants throughout the end of the tenancy approach; reminding tenants to pay the last month’s rent, to clean the property, repair any damage and sort out the garden.
That’s why we are working closely with The Depositary. This innovative software application helps landlords and lettings agents to better manage the end of tenancy process. We’ve integrated some of The Depositary’s process into our tenancy deposit software, as we know that this solution will lead to fewer disputes for us to handle.
The Dispute Service recognises that property law can be difficult to understand, even for property professionals. This is why we are proud to be working in partnership with Complylex, the online compliance-based platform for estate and letting agents. Together, both organisations are committed to helping property professionals navigate complex industry legislation and raise standards in the Private Rented Sector (PRS).
The Complylex platform has been designed to provide concise, accessible information on property law presented in a way that is easy to understand. The tool was created by a team of property professionals who came together with a mission to demystify legislation and give their fellow professionals a simple and affordable way to comply with the legal requirements governing their sectors in England and Wales.
The Dispute Service is a not for profit company limited by guarantee. It has a Board with a mix of independent directors with skills in dispute resolution, commercial activities and housing, directors representing trade and professional bodies in the private rented sector and two executive Directors.
The Board is chaired by Professor Martin Partington CBE QC; a well known academic lawyer.