Knowing your rights is essential when ending a tenancy, especially when you want to protect yourself from uncertain rental situations.
And if you don’t want to fall into unpleasant circumstances with your landlord, you need to fulfil specific responsibilities that you, as a tenant, have.
Ending your tenancy the right way will ensure you get your deposit money back, so this helpful guide with move-out tips will help you understand your rights as a tenant. As well as what are your responsibilities and how to protect yourself from undesired possibilities.
Property Repairs and Maintenance
There’s probably a good chance that something in your rental property needs repairs at the end of your tenancy. Whether it’s a burst pipe or a leaking washing machine, when it requires specific maintenance, it is your landlord’s obligation to take care of it.
However, you, as a tenant, also have certain obligations when it comes to repairs. It is your responsibility to take good care of your rental property, inform your landlord about needed repairs on time, and provide access when repair work is scheduled.
Of course, you cannot contact your landlord about minor maintenance, such as changing light bulbs. You’re also responsible for making sure you or your visitors are not causing any damage to the rental property.
Generally, your landlord is responsible for repairs related to electrical wiring, chimneys and ventilation, gas pipes and boilers, heating and hot water, damages from a natural disaster, and the exterior of the rental property, including walls, roof, stairs, etc.
Depending on the seriousness of the problem, your landlord has to take care of the repairs in a reasonable period of time.
Pest Control Issues
When it comes to bugs and other pests, landlords are always responsible for the overall pest control of the rental property. It is their responsibility to ensure that the rental is habitable and safe.
And if tenants report a pest problem, it a the landlord’s responsibility to investigate the issue and decide what solution is required to get things under control in a timely manner.
Whether the pest issue is caused by existing issues like holes in walls or the pests were already on the property before you moved in, the landlord has to cover the expenses and take care of it.
However, tenants also have certain responsibilities and can be held accountable if the problem is caused by the tenant’s behaviour or actions.
Keeping the rental property clean is all tenants’ responsibility, and if you don’t take out the garbage regularly, leave bins open, keep food uncovered in the kitchen, or do other similar actions, there’s a good chance you’ve caused the appearance of pests.
In this case, it’s entirely within the tenant’s jurisdiction to take care of the issue.
No matter the issues, you can assist your landlord with finding a suitable solution for both sides and discuss the options beforehand, especially in case you are planning to stay for a longer period of time and keep a good relationship with them.
Ending Rental Agreement the Right Way
Of course, as you’ve probably already suggested, you’ll have to inform your landlord in advance about ending your rental agreement. There are, of course, good ways and bad ways of giving your notice. If you do it the wrong way, you risk paying rent even after moving out.
You’ll have to consider giving your notice depending on the type of your tenancy contract, which can be for a period or fixed-term tenancy.
In the notice, you’ll want to inform your landlord of the last day you’re planning to live in the rental property. This is called a termination date. Usually, in fixed-term tenancies, it is required to give your notice 60 days in advance.
Keep in mind that you have to leave the rental property in the same condition as when you moved in. You can be held responsible for any damages caused by you or your pets or guests.
Risks of Leaving Without Notice
Leaving without notice to your landlord hides many risks you should be aware of. For example, your landlord can charge rent up to the date of your tenancy agreement. There are specific steps tenants need to follow when they’re planning on ending their tenancy.
Simply put, you can’t just inform your landlord that you’re leaving and pack your bags. If there isn’t a particular situation or you have reached the date of your tenancy agreement, then you must inform your landlord the right way before you leave the rental property.
Otherwise, you risk not only your deposit money but also paying rent to the end of your agreement date.
If there’s a unique situation like moving to work, live or study somewhere else, you can reach a new agreement with your landlord.
When you get your landlord’s consent, they’ll still need to sign a document confirming this new agreement. Just try to inform your landlord as soon as you know that you will be moving out of the property.
Getting Your Deposit Back
Commonly, tenants pay a deposit at the beginning of their tenancy, and they get it back at the end of it. And you can expect your landlord or agency to hold that deposit only if there’s a good reason for it. Deposits are usually a large sum of money that tenants want back when ending their tenancy so they can move to the next rental property.
Normally, landlords are required to give the deposit back to the tenant once the tenancy ends and after they make an inspection of the rental property.
Tenants have the responsibility to keep the property in good condition and avoid causing any damages. If such are found during the inspections, the tenant is responsible for paying for them.
Oftentimes, the landlords just reduce the amount of the deposit they return to the tenant.
Knowing how to do end-of-tenancy cleaning is an important aspect of ensuring your deposit money back.
When tenants get to the point of leaving their rental property, they often use professionals to do deep end of tenancy cleaning to ensure the highest standards are met.
Most cleaning agencies follow specially designed cleaning checklists to meet the checkout expectations. Also, they can provide the needed cleaning supplies, but most probably, you will have to move out your belongings before the cleaning session.
Now You Know What You Have to Do as a Tenant
By following these ending of tenancy tips, you’ll ensure yourself a flawless experience with moving out and getting your deposit money back. You might be interested to learn some tips on making your relocation less painful as well before leaving.
But the most important thing is that you’ll find yourself well prepared when the time of your rental agreement comes to an end by knowing your rights and responsibilities as a tenant.
It is essential to understand the end-of-tenancy cleaning and the necessary deadlines and agreements, so you’ll know exactly what the right steps are.