If you’re going to be moving out of your rental property in the near future, it is vital that you tackle the task of cleaning – one of the main causes of tenancy deposit disputes.
A recent study found that one in five tenants expect to lose their whole deposit when they move out. If you’re looking to get all of your deposit back, these tips on fully spring cleaning the property will help:
Take on the responsibility
Prepare yourself for the task ahead by buying some rubber gloves and new cleaning products so that you’re ready to tackle the whole property.
There may be some parts of the property that were dirty when you moved in, but unless you brought this up with your landlord or letting agent at check-in or it’s on the inventory, it will be your responsibility to clean it. If you can’t prove that you didn’t make the mess, you will be charged with sorting it out.
Avoid kitchen chaos
There are many things that you need to think about cleaning in the kitchen, but one thing you should never forget is the fridge-freezer. Depending on your tenancy agreement terms, you may need to switch off the fridge and/or freezer and you may need to defrost the freezer before moving out.
If there is a lot of ice build-up, this will flood the kitchen floor when the freezer defrosts, so put down some towels to soak up the water.
A task that may seem a little bit gross is cleaning the bin – but if it belongs to the property, you must ensure it is clean. Additionally, the area around the bin will also be checked.
Battle the bathroom
Not only do you have to make sure the bath/shower, sink, tiles and floor are clean in the bathroom, but little things like the grouting between the tiles will need to be spotless. You can buy a specialist bathroom grout cleaner to help you with this, which will save you time and money in the long run.
And don’t forget to clean the plugs – product can build up around the plugs, making them grubbier than you initially thought.
It is a good idea to clean the toilet last so that you can throw away any cloths afterwards.
Perfect the living space
You may think that general rooms in the property – such as the living room, dining room and bedrooms – require less cleaning. But don’t be fooled, every little detail will be checked for cleanliness.
Ensure that the woodwork around the doors, the skirting boards and window frames are impeccable. Also, remember to clean the windows with glass cleaner and dry them off with a dry cloth or kitchen roll so that they don’t get dirty again when the product on them dries.
If you’ve stuck anything to the walls with blu-tack or tape, make sure that no residue has been left behind. You may also need to fill in any holes you’ve made with nails in the walls, depending on your tenancy agreement. Sometimes, landlords or letting agents prefer you to leave the picture hooks there, but others will want them removed.
Get a second opinion
If you’ve let the property become dirty, your cleaning efforts may look perfect in your opinion, but it is always wise to have someone else come and check over it.
Ask a friend or family member to look around the whole property and check everything as thoroughly as the landlord or letting agent will. Tell them to be honest and you should spot any faults that can be easily corrected before the check-out inspection.
Be at the inspection
If possible, it is a good idea to be at the check-out inspection when the landlord or letting agent is going to go around the property. Ask them if this is allowed and remember to be polite and friendly.
If you have a good rapport with the landlord or agent, they will probably let you fix any minor problems while you’re there, instead of them putting it in their report.
While you may consider something a big problem, it might surprise you to see what they consider fair wear and tear. However, if you have broken something or caused considerable damage, it is always best to come clean (possibly before check-out) so that you have time to replace it and avoid having the money deducted from your deposit.
If you’re busy or don’t understand the level of cleaning required for the end of tenancy, you could go to a few local cleaning firms and request quotes for your rental property. If you do use a company, remember to keep the receipt and give a copy to the landlord or letting agent so that they can confirm the property has been cleaned to a professional standard.
If you’re a landlord approaching check-out, you may be worried about finding any malicious damage caused by the tenant. Remember that our Defaqto 5-star rated Landlord Property Insurance covers this damage, alongside many other losses.
Additionally, you may be concerned about having an empty property in the near future. But don’t worry – Unoccupied Property Insurance will protect the home until you have tenants to fill it.
Happy spring cleaning!