Why landlords claim against a deposit
The news that end of tenancy cleaning is the single biggest cause of deposit deductions will probably come as little surprise to most landlords and agents.
The latest figures from the Deposit Protection Service reveal that 63% of landlords who made a claim against their tenants’ deposit gave cleaning as the reason.
Other costs cited by landlords damage to property and contents (53%), redecoration (37%) and rent arrears ( 23%).
In a separate report, students were found to be more likely than not to lose their deposit in full, despite two-thirds disputing it.
While a reasonable amount of wear and tear is to be expected after a tenancy, particularly long-term ones, tenants are expected to return the property to the state of cleanliness it was originally rented out in – or better if the terms of a tenants’ lease specify..
But the report by Nationwide FlexStudent found students were being hit with an average bill of £150 once they handed in the keys, with eight out of 10 ten saying the money was held back unfairly.
Nationwide found that of those that lost their deposit, 55% lost it in full, and although 68% of these disputed the loss, less than a third (29%) got the total amount back as a result. Just under a fifth (19%) didn’t get anything back at all.
How to avoid end of tenancy cleaning disputes
- Take photos of the property before the tenants move in that you can refer back to when they come to hand in the keys.
- Include an inventory with a check-in and a check-out report.
- Make regular inspections of the property – making sure to agree a time with tenants at least 24 hours before.
Discount Landlord provides a range of specialist insurance products to help you protect your investment.
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