I started privately renting a property in 2014. The first year was arranged through a letting agent, to whom I paid the deposit (£810) and fees directly. When I renewed the lease in 2015 the landlord asked me to renew directly with them, rather than going through the agent, which I did and have done every year since then. I recently renewed the lease again for a year.
The landlord contacted me yesterday asking me to get in touch with the letting agent to ask them to release the deposit to them so they can hold it under their own account. The deposit is held by a third party called the Deposit Protection Scheme. The landlord is asking that I release the money directly to them, which they will then deposit in the DPS themselves.
My questions are: can the landlord ask me to do this? And should they? Is there anyway I can protect myself in this instance?