What happens at the end of a tenancy?

The process of ending a tenancy and useful checklists

The process

As a tenancy comes to an end, a time should be arranged by the landlord to do a final inspection of the dwelling. This inspection can refer to the inventory of items provided when the tenant first moved in. The inspection will identify any damage or breakages above normal wear and tear [link] that need to be addressed. Costs should only be deducted from the security deposit if there is damage, the required notice period was not given or bills were not paid etc.

The landlord and tenant should discuss the cleaning of the property. If the dwelling is not left reasonably clean and tidy, cleaning can be arranged by the tenant or the cost can be deducted from the deposit.

All the utilities accounts e.g. gas, electricity should be closed and contact details should be provided to enable the landlord to forward on any correspondence.

Arrangements should be made for the return of keys and the deposit.

Checklist for tenants moving out

To make moving out as seamless as possible and to ensure your deposit is returned promptly take a look at this checklist

  • Keep open communication with your landlord regarding moving out details including the return of the deposit.
  • Clean the property.
  • Remove all your belongings.
  • Remove rubbish (if required).
  • Ensure rent and all other charges and utilities are paid in full.
  • Ensure there is no damage beyond normal wear and tear.
  • Do a meter reading.
  • Transfer utility bills back into the name of the landlord.
  • Create a list of the contents and condition of all items in the property and get the landlord to sign this to confirm their agreement. Check every plumbing fixture, light switch, cupboard door, and appliance to make sure they all work properly.
  • Take photos or video tape recordings of the property before the tenancy ends.
  • Do a pre inspection with the landlord/agent before the final inspections so any matters can be rectified
  • Do a final inspection with the landlord/ agent.
  • Return the keys when vacating.
  • Retain all written records in case of dispute.
  • Leave a forwarding address.