PropTech company Canopy is partnering with deposit funding firm Fronted to launch the concept of a lifetime deposit, which can be transferred from one rental property to another.
This concept is believed to be central to the government’s forthcoming Rental Reform White Paper, expected in the coming months. It echoes a pledge put forward by Prime Minister Boris Johnson back in 2019 when he outlined some ideas for changes within the private rental sector.
A statement from Canopy says the difficulty of awaiting the return of one deposit while having to find another for the next property is one of the biggest issues in a renters’ experience.
Up to this point, when moving between properties, renters have had to put down a new deposit before getting their old one back. On average, this amounts to finding £1,228 for a typical five-week deposit when an equivalent amount of money is tied up elsewhere.
The Canopy/Fronted lifetime deposit lets renters transfer their deposit from one property to the next.
For customers to qualify they will a deposit protected in one of the three deposit protection schemes. Once Fronted verifies the existing deposit, it pays the new deposit to the new landlord or agent on behalf of the renter.
The old deposit after deductions is then returned to Fronted to cover the new deposit.
Chris Hutchinson, chief executive of Canopy, says: “Traditional deposits are a significant barrier to people becoming renters in the first instance, and then a further barrier to renters moving home. Lifetime deposits have been an ambition for the industry for years, but a viable solution hasn’t existed to date.
“Fronted have partnered with the three deposit protection schemes to enable them to offer this solution and we are proud they have chosen Canopy to launch this to market, bringing even more benefit to renters using the Canopy platform.”
And Fronted’s chief executive Jamie Campbell adds: “There is about to be a big shake up in the deposit market. “Lifetime Deposit” could make existing solutions obsolete for most renters moving between properties. We strongly believe in Canopy’s vision and this partnership gives additional credibility to our model and our future plans for Fronted.”
Canopy claims its ambition is to build ”an eco-system for renters, letting agents and landlords that improves the lives of rental households by providing access to tools, products and services that fix the pain points associated with renting and enable them to improve their financial health.”