What is the Deposit Guarantee Scheme (DGS)?
The scheme is designed to help people who could afford the rent payments of a private property but would struggle to save enough money to pay for the deposit usually required by most landlords.
A guarantee from the Council is given in place of the usual cash deposit. The amount guaranteed would be up to the value of what you would normally ask for as a cash deposit. If a landlord has a guarantee with Stafford Borough Council Deposit Guarantee Scheme the bond will not have to be placed within a Tenancy Deposit Protection Schemes.
If the applicant damages the property and a claim is agreed, then we will arrange payment to you. The applicant must then pay this money back to us.
Remember: this is a written agreement (not cash) guaranteeing a deposit equal to the usual cash deposit.
Who is the scheme for?
Anyone in housing need, who usually lives within the Stafford Borough and is in receipt of a low income, can apply. Applicants will not be accepted if they have large debts to the Council with no repayment plan in place, existing anti-social behaviour issues or if we think the chosen property is not affordable. Applicants under the age of 25 or have never had their own tenancy before, may need to take part in a two hour tenancy training course before being eligible.
If I want to accept someone on the DGS what will happen?
If someone wants to rent your property using the DGS we will send you further information, including a sample copy of the contract which gives all terms and conditions of the scheme. If you are happy to continue we will draw up the contract and will ask you to provide us with a copy of the tenancy agreement and agreed inventory along with copies of the gas and electrical safety certificates.
Our Housing Standards Team will also check each property in the scheme to make sure that there are no notices relating to disrepair or previous complaints of harassment. The DGS will not be offered in these circumstances. The property should also be free from serious hazards under the Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS) standards.
How do I make a claim?
If you need to make a claim, you should tell our Housing Options Team as soon as you know your tenant is leaving or has left the property, whichever happens first. We will then arrange to visit the property to assess the damage and approve any claim. We will ask you for some extra information to support your claim such as two quotes from a contractor for the cost of cleaning or repair works.