Tips for tenants ready to move
TENANTS are staying in properties for longer than ever before with the average duration standing at more than 19 months.
But the bonus of the rented sector, its flexibility, means inevitably some tenants will move on at some point – bringing responsibilities, challenges and irritations.
With this is mind the Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA) has drawn together tips to ease the process for tenants.
Stay in touch – be sure to inform your bank, employer and friends that you're about to change address. It's also worth leaving a forwarding address and telephone number with the landlord.
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Settling up – before you leave a rental property, be sure to notify utility providers at least 48 hours prior to moving out.
Clearing out – remember that a rented property should always be left clean and tidy when you leave.
If an inventory was taken when you moved in, be sure to check the state of individual rooms against this and move furniture back to its original position to reduce the chance of deposit disputes arising.
If a formal inventory wasn't compiled upon moving in, it is always prudent to leave a property as tidy as possible on moving out days and to take timed/dated photos as evidence of your clear-up efforts.
Remember that any furniture that you have brought into a property must be removed at the end of the tenancy, unless otherwise agreed with the landlord.
Come clean – breakages happen, and often reporting any accidental damage to the relevant party before you've moved out could reduce the expense to you in the long term. If a landlord has to replace something at the last minute, the increased cost may be passed on to you in the form of a deposit deduction.
The deposit – once issues around costs are resolved and there is agreement on how much deposit will be released, it must be returned to you within 10 days of the tenancy ending. If a dispute remains ongoing, your deposit will be held in the secure scheme it was put into at the start of the tenancy until this is ironed out.
Use the professionals – if you have any queries during a tenancy, or when you're considering moving to a new property, get the best possible advice from a letting agent affiliated to a professional organisation like ARLA.
Susan Fitz-Gibbon, President of ARLA, said: "The Private Rented Sector can offer fantastic flexibility for renters and by observing a few simple guidelines, tenants can ensure any move between properties is as smooth as possible."