If you’ve been renting, then you must be familiar with the feeling of stress when you move out and are wondering whether you will be getting your deposit back or not. Whether you’ve had some previous issues with the landlord that make you believe he might make your life hard, or you’ve left the cleaning process too late, here are some tips on what to do if you want to get your deposit back with no fuss.
How can I get my deposit back when I move out?
- Know your contract
- Be aware of any previous damage
- Give notice in good time
- Make sure you repair any damage you’ve made
- Make the place squeaky clean
- Inspect the house before the landlord does
- Know your rights
Know your contract
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The first piece of advice we can give you would be to know the contract you sign and all the clauses in it. The reason why this is important when receiving your deposit back is because the rental lease will tell you exactly when you are allowed to leave and when you are required to notify your landlord about it. In it you will also find all the terms and conditions of your deposit which will tell you what not to do if you want it back at the end of your tenancy.
Be aware of any previous damage in the flat
If you don’t do this, a disreputable landlord might use it against you and make you pay for it by refusing to return your deposit. When moving in, keep an eye out for existing damage during your inspection of each room with your landlord present. Take pictures of any marks, holes or other kinds of damage, and if the landlord is not there with you, make sure you send him/her the pictures at the beginning of the tenancy, so they are aware of them.
Give your notice in good time
Going back to the first point of knowing your contract terms properly, make sure you give your landlord the appropriate notice before you move out. This is usually one month but it can differ from place to place. Some landlords might make you pay an additional month of rent, or keep your deposit, if you don’t give them the appropriate notice, so this can be a very costly mistake.
Make sure you repair any damage you’ve made
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If there are any damages made in the time of your tenancy, make sure you sort them out. Repair everything that needs repairing so the landlord won’t need to take it off your deposit. If you want to save some money try and do the easy repairs yourself, however make sure you leave any electrical issues to the professionals.
Make the place squeaky clean
One very important aspect if you want to get your deposit back is to give the place a proper clean before the landlord comes over to check it. Try to go further than just dusting: get rid of the limescale in the bathroom and the mould on the walls if there is any. Make it look as nice as possible so there is no reason for the proprietor to be upset. If you feel like the job is a bit too tedious, or you’ve left it until the last minute, one way to get it done is by hiring a professional cleaning company. While this means you need to spend some money, it saves you some in the long run as you could recuperate the deposit you might’ve otherwise lost.
Inspect the house before the landlord does
After you’ve done your spring cleaning and repairing, give the house an extra scan for things you might’ve missed in the first place. You want to make sure everything is in order before checking out. Go through each room and check it again. If it’s ready for another person to move in then you’ve done your job right.
Know your rights
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Most important, it’s vital that you know your rights so that others, such as your landlord in this case, can’t take advantage of you. As contracts can differ from place to place, make sure you read them properly before signing them. If you feel like something is just not right, don’t hesitate to get in contact with someone who might be more knowledgeable.
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Feature image credit: Andrii Yalanskyi/Shutterstock