*This is a collaborative guest post
As a tenant in rented accommodation it can be hard to keep a property in the exact same state it was in when you first walked through the front door. After all, you’ve lived there for some time and things are going to get damaged through everyday wear and tear. That’s why it’s a good idea to take some time before you move, to ensure everything is in order and to have a better chance of seeing all that deposit returned.
Here are five great home moving tips from landlords for those of us who are yet to climb that first rung on the property ladder and are making the most of renting for now:
1. Check your inventory carefully before moving in
Your letting agent should complete a thorough check of the property before you move in, noting any scrapes or damage that was there before you. Check that everything has been noted and get things added if they have been missed off. Some agencies and landlords are quick to take money if they believe the damage was caused by you – even if it’s something as small as a scrape on a wall.
2. Do a thorough clean of your rented property before you leave
Before you vacate the property it’s really important that you do a thorough clean, either check with the letting agency or landlord as to who they would normally use or sign up for Molly Maid end of tenancy cleaning for a professional touch. Ensure the little things such as Venetian blinds, skirting boards and the inside of cupboards are cleaned thoroughly. You’ll be amazed at the amount of dirt that builds on these over time.
3. Try to move out the day before your inspection
“That way there is no stuff in the way of the letting agent when they visit and it will speed up the deposit returning process,” Ian Talbot, a landlord with four properties in Peterborough, confirmed. “I’ve worked with letting agents in the past who will claim your belongings caused obstruction and therefore charge for another inspection. I now work with an agent who doesn’t do this but it’s something you should be aware of.”
4. Challenge any extortionate fees or charges
“I’m going to be honest,” said Tim Pond, a landlord based in London. “Some agents overcharge when it comes to fees when you move out. Tenants think landlords make up these fees off the top of their head, when in fact it’s the letting agent and we aren’t aware of what they’re charging.”
An example of this was highlighted in a Telegraph article late last year, which featured a landlord who received a bill of £260 to replace a toilet seat and their tenant had waited nine months for it to be sorted. This situation does differ, because the fee was for work completed while the tenant was in situ, and the landlord had to pay, but it’s not uncommon for tenants to see £100 taken from their deposit for not cleaning Venetian blinds or because there was a minor stain on the carpet. Challenge any fees you think are over the top because sometimes they can be lowered.
5. Don’t leave anything behind
In some cases, any belongings left in a property will be classed as rubbish and you will be charged for the removal of it – even if it’s just carried to the bin out front. You must leave the space exactly how you left it, empty and with as much minimal visible damage as possible.