If you’re getting ready to move out of your rental property, there are a few things you should do before you drop those keys back off to your landlord or property manager. These 7 things will avoid any disputes and help you get your bond back.
1. Make sure the property is cleaned
Cleaning is the biggest reason we have bond disputes. In order to avoid any issues or delays in getting your bond back, I always recommend using a professional end of lease cleaning company. If you decide to take the task on yourself, be sure to give the property a thorough clean paying special attention to bathrooms, kitchens and especially the oven.
2. Fix anything you broke
Remember that you are responsible to return he property back to the owner in the same condition it was leased to you in – allowing for wear and tear. Anything that you broke or damaged during the tenancy is your responsibility to repair before you move out of the property.
The most common issues we face are excessive damage to wooden flooring and stains on carpets. Make sure that carpets are steam cleaned first before looking into repairing/replacing any damage.
3. Remove picture hooks and patch up walls
Your rental agreement will have instructions on how you should be hanging picture hooks – most leases will require you to ask for permission before hanging pictures or to only use the sticky hooks. When you remove your pictures, make sure to take all of the hooks out of the wall and remove any sticky hooks you installed. Any damage to the walls of the rental property will need to be repaired and paint that’s been peeled off when removing the hooks will need to be patched up.
4. Wash or repaint heavily marked or scuffed up walls
Still on the topic of walls, make sure that none of the walls are excessively dented or scuffed up prior to vacating the property. If you notice any walls that require a lot of cleaning, try washing them first and if that doesn’t work, you may need to get a painter in – make sure that you match the colour otherwise you could have to repaint the property again.
5. Make sure you remove all of your stuff – and rubbish.
I’ve found all sorts of things left behind in properties – everything from photo albums to laptops. Make sure that when you finish packing, you go through every room and going through all of the cupboards. In most cases, a new tenant might be lined up to move in shortly after you move out so getting access to the property to collect what you left behind could be difficult to organise.
Don’t leave your rubbish in the property – the owner isn’t going to clean it up and neither is the property manager. So having this cleaned for you will cost you money.
6. Compare your property to the Ingoing Condition Report
When you first moved into your property, the owner or Property Manager would have completed an Ingoing Condition Report and provided you with a copy. Use this document to compare how you’re returning the rental property to how you received it. If there are any disputes with cleanliness or damage, this is the document which will be used by the tribunal to decide if you should pay for anything further.
Our reports have high resolution images and detailed notes of the condition of the property when our tenants first move in to a rental property. This ensures that there’s no argument over the condition of the property when they moved in to when they move out.
7. Meet the landlord or property manager at the property
Try to organise a pre-vacate inspection before you return your keys. You should try time this a week before you move out – allowing yourself enough time to get any additional cleaning or repairs done before you have to move out.