From Wednesday 15th May this year, all eligible deposits from privately rented properties must be lodged with one of three government-approved tenancy deposit schemes in compliance with the policy set out in the Tenancy Deposit Schemes (Scotland) Regulations 2011.

The scheme was introduced by the Scottish Government to protect tenants' money and put a stop to certain rogue landlords' underhand practice of withholding money on false grounds.

However, new research commissioned by SafeDeposits Scotland has revealed that more than half of all deposits from private tenants may not yet have been secured, leaving thousands of landlords under threat of hefty fines and legal repercussions.

SafeDeposits Scotland, one of the approved schemes, said 129,164 deposits were submitted to all three schemes by the end of March. This compares to a potential 291,190 approved properties whose owners signed up for the scheme.

This worrying revelation has been met with concern from scheme administrators, as the imminent deadline has failed to generate the anticipated urgency within the private rental sector.

Landlords across the country are urged to act now to ensure regulatory requirements are met, or prepare to face the consequences.

Both landlords and tenants can find information at any of the Schemes' websites -