Is the end of your lease approaching? If so, are you making preparations for the handover? There’s lots to do to get the house back in tip-top shape in order to avoid any deductions in your security deposit. After all, a security deposit is made up of a few months’ worth of rent depending on your lease – a substantial amount of money that can go a very long way. That said, a pristine home is a surefire way to get your deposit back in full but what does one need to do to accomplish that? Here’s your go-to checklist for a smooth handover.
1. Deep clean the home
Start with the basics. The more spotless the home is, the less likely the landlord can fault you with any unexpected ‘cleaning’ charges later on. Every nook and cranny of the home that is usually overlooked should be cleaned with extra love and care. Like in between toilet tiles, underneath couches and even the blades on your ceiling fan (if you have one, that is) should be scrubbed away, vacuumed and dusted off. While deep cleaning could be tiring and time-consuming, it’ll pay off when the handover goes off without a hitch and your deposit is returned in full.
If you’re not up for it, there’s also cleaning services you can engage for a more hands-off alternative.
2. Fix minor repairs
Arguably the most important step, fixing minor repairs can be your saving grace in getting your full deposit back. While landlords can’t charge you for normal wear and tear (such as wall cracks and creaky hinges) they may still find fault in any damages they could find, no matter how minor. Be sure to prepare for this ahead of time by taking care of minor repairs such as fixing door hinges, door locks, nicks on surfaces, plumbing, electrical wiring, etc. These repairs are a small cost to pay but will make a world of a difference once the landlord does a thorough inspection and bills you a pricey repair job that could be easily avoided.
3. Take lots of photos
Don’t leave it to chance as attention to detail plays a key role here. This is most useful if you’ve gone ahead and taken photos of every defect present in the home before moving in. If that’s not the case, be sure to take pictures of the rental home before the handover to ensure the landlord can’t surprise you with charges for damages that weren’t there before. It’s important to document defects that were not caused by you as you’re not required to pay to fix them.
4. Leave it bare
Leave only your memories as everything else must go. Be sure to pack up and move everything, leaving only the original items that were there when you first moved in; refer to your inventory list for this. This is important because discarding your belongings can be another convenient excuse for the landlord to chip into your deposit. Take the precaution to be on the safe side.
Preparing for a smooth handover is no easy task. In some tenancy agreements, it may even be a requirement to give the walls a fresh coat of paint before vacating. If that’s applicable to you, check out our brand new suite of home improvement services which includes quality renovation, home painting and much more.