You need to have a successful check in and check out process for your rental property whether you are a new landlord or seasoned investor. We have come up with a useful guide for landlords to set out their responsibilities at the start and end of a tenancy.
Before the check in and check out process
When a tenant shows interest in your rental property it’s normal to request fees in order to complete necessary administration work. A letting agent will normally arrange this for you if you have instructed one. Otherwise, you will need to compile some important documents before the check in and check out process starts:
- A tenant application form
- Credit checks
- Right to Rent checks
- A tenancy agreement (usually an Assured Shorthold Tenancy)
Where you ask your tenant to pay a deposit it must be protected in a Government-approved protection scheme. You then have 30 days to provide your tenant with the prescribed information.
In addition, you should compile a detailed inventory before the check-in process.
When all referencing checks have been completed you can agree on a move in date with the tenant. It’s a good idea to go through the tenancy agreement with the tenant. This step makes sure that the tenant knows what their responsibilities are and your duties as a landlord.
You should also visit the rental property with the tenant to go through the inventory so any problems can be addressed transparently. The inventory report must then be agreed and signed by both parties.
Once these steps have been carried out it’s time to hand over the keys to the tenant!
Throughout the tenancy
You may conduct periodic inspections throughout your tenant’s time in the rental property. These inspections allow the tenant to raise any problems and enable you to check that the tenancy agreement is being followed. Periodic inspections are usually scheduled around every three to four months.
REMEMBER: You must give your tenant at least 24 hours’ notice before visiting the property, and you must have their consent.
During or before the end of the tenancy, the tenant will inform you that they are going to move out. At this stage it’s useful to contact them with details of their responsibilities at check-out. You should also inform them about the expected condition of the rental property.
You must check the condition and contents of the property at check-out against the original inventory and highlight any damage. Remember that fair wear and tear cannot be deducted as damage from the tenant’s deposit. Invite your tenant to be present at the check-out so that you can agree the condition of the property against the original inventory. Once the inventory has been completed you can take the keys from the tenant.
With regards to deductions from the tenancy deposit, it’s always good to mutually agree these with the tenant. The deductions will be based on the condition and contents of the check-out report. Where the tenant disputes any deductions, the case will go to adjudication as instructed by the Government-approved protection schemes. Evidence will be required as part of the process so always remember to take photographs when conducting the inventory.
When you agree on the level of deposit to be returned you have ten days to send the money back to the tenant.
Do you need a pre or end of tenancy clean for your rental property? If so give our ProClean Team a call on 020 8742 1808 and they will be happy to help!