By Craig Smith

At the end of every tenancy comes the day that a lot of Landlords and tenants both dread… the day the tenant hands the property back to the Landlord. The actual arrangements can be simple enough but sometimes the property can be returned in a less that satisfactory condition.

Landlords Not Happy

A recent survey of 300 Landlords by Meet My Agent suggests that 73% were not happy with the condition in which their rental property was returned to them. This doesn’t necessarily mean that the properties needed a complete refurb but can mean items such as cleaning or repairs were not up to scratch. That said, the survey also suggests that 41% of Landlords’ properties have needed a complete refurbishment following a tenant vacating which is staggering!

Our Recent Statistics

I’ve looked back through our most recent 20 check outs and can conclude that, in general, more properties have issues upon the tenants vacating than those that don’t. The split is 60% that have issues, whether it is something small such as a couple of hours cleaning or more in depth works, to 40% that were left with no issues whatsoever and are ready to be occupied again.

Facts Instead of Presumptions

To get a better picture I think it is more important to look at the actual level of works required rather than just looking at the number of issues. Looking back again at the 60% which needed works, I cant find a single one which didn’t need some form of cleaning following the tenant vacating. Again, this doesn’t mean that these tenants have lived in squalor, (far from it!) but does mean that the property wasn’t left in such a clean condition as when the tenancy first began.

3 out of those 12 needed items other than cleaning such as replacement items but none of these were anything too major.

Preventing Extra Works

One way to better the chances of a property being returned in good condition is to not only take an inventory at the start of the tenancy but also to tell the tenants what you would expect. Part of our usual process is to send a short set of guidelines to the tenant which lists some of the most commonly forgotten items. Some of the main concerns mentioned above include dusting down skirting boards or making sure a kitchen extractor hood is left clean.

Best Practice

Through the experiences this office has gained we find that advising tenants before they vacate can help to ensure a property is returned in a good condition. Of course this isn’t always the case but it does all add up to ensure a smoother handover!

One Thought on “Rental Property News: Survey Shows High Number of Properties Left in Poor Condition

  1. Thanks for your post it was very interesting.

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