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How to ensure deposit return runs smoothly this summer

That dreaded lump sum of deposit you have to pay before you move in is even more of an annoyance if you don’t receive it back. Student houses are bound to be messy and a bit chaotic, but if you take certain actions throughout the year, it’s not so hard to get your deposit back.  

  • Read your lease carefully

 Before you move in, Check your lease carefully! Ensure that you know what counts as general wear and tear and your responsibilities as tenants. Ask ask ask! If you are unsure about anything at all, don't be afraid to speak to your landlord/letting agency. This ensures that you are as clear as possible on your responsibilities before you move in.

  • Do a detailed inventory at the start of the year

Your landlord/letting agency will usually always provide you with an inventory at the beginning of your tenancy. This inventory is extremely important as it is what will be used to check you out at the end of your tenancy therefore determine whether there are to be any charges put against your deposit. Take time to go through this document with all of your housemates and clearly document any noticeable damage that is not already listed on the inventory. It is a good idea to take your own dated photos at the beginning of your tenancy as this will help with any discrepancies after check out. 

  • Report problems as they occur

Don't wait until the end of the year to report any maintenance issues to your landlord/letting agent. report as they happen no matter how minor and always ensure that your maintenance report is in writing. This ensures that any issues are dealt with swiftly and don't become an issue at the end of the tenancy.

  • Try and replace broken things

So your friend broke the hinge on your kitchen unit the other night, if it is something small that is easily fixable and safe to do so it's best to do this yourself as your landlord/letting agency will charge to repair something you or a friend of yours broke, plus it will reduce any discrepancies at the end of your tenancy. Also replacing small items such as lightbulbs is also recommended as these are inexpensive to replace.

  • Party somewhere else

 Everyone loves hosting, but the clean up is often challenging and things around the house getting broken is a given. If you can’t help partying at yours, try and keep it contained to only a few rooms of the house.

  • Keep on top of cleaning throughout the year

 Rather than doing a massive binge clean every so often, try and encourage your housemates to be clean and tidy throughout the year. This is especially important for things like ovens and microwaves which can’t easily be saved. No one likes chipping away at burnt chips at the bottom of the oven on moving-out day. 

  • Keep a good relationship with your landlord

 Responding politely and keeping in touch with your landlord throughout the year can make all the difference when you’re asking for £300 back at the end of your tenancy. By keeping him up to date with problems and communicating maturely about problems, you shouldn’t have too much of a problem!

  • Deep clean

 Before you move out, a deep clean of the entire property is vital. Try to remember not to leave behind things like unwanted pots and pans and other kitchen items. Remove any screws or nails from walls and empty all of your bedroom draws. To avoid chaos, try and coordinate a date on which you and your housemates will all move out. This way, you can all chip in and don’t have to rely on anyone!


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