If you ever lost part of your deposit, when moving out of an apartment or rental home, you probably decided that you’ll never allow that to happen again.  This trusty list was made by landlords and property managers at 8z Rentals, that will help you remember everything necessary to keep your damage deposit!

1 – Twelve Months of Disrepair Can’t be Cleaned in 24 Hours


Plan to move your stuff out 24-48 hours before returning your keys to be able to do a complete and thorough cleaning.

2 – Reduce Smoke Damage Even if Smoking is Allowed


Even if your landlord allowed smoking in the rental property, if you’re a heavy smoker, it will take more to clean that property to be ready to rent.  Smoke damage may require repainting, or an Ionizer to clean out the smoke smell from carpets and drapes.  If the smell still can’t be cleaned out, the carpet may have to be replaced.

3 – Transfer Your Utilities


Make sure to move utilities you’re responsible for to your name when you move in, and take it out of your name immediately when you move out.  You likely can’t get reimbursed if you continue paying for the cable, Internet, water, heating or electricity bills for the next tenants.

4 – Reduce Carpet Wear and Tear


If your carpet was in good shape when you moved in to the property, there should not be visible wear and tear after just one year.  If it looks a little tattered, it will need a good clean prior to returning your keys.  An ordinary vacuum cleaner won’t clean as well as a truck mounted vacuum.  If you have a property manager, ask them for a recommendation of who to use, and make an appointment for them to come before your final walkthrough.

5 – Prevent Damage to Walls


Purchase adhesive hooks to hang pictures and decorations so that you will not damage or put holes in.  DIY wall repairs can be difficult due to matching the paint color and the wall’s texture.

6 – Don’t Save the Repairs for Move Out


It is important to clean and make small repairs and replacements throughout your lease term. This will save you money after you move out (your landlord won’t have to call a handyman and pay labor and parts, or a cleaning service to pay hourly.) Even if you can’t make the repair yourself, having the replacement for the damaged or missing part there for the handyman, will save you money more of your deposit.

7 – Don’t Skip the Move In Walk-Through Inspection


Make sure to do a thorough walk-through inspection when you first move in, documenting any existing damage with photos, and sending them to your landlord ASAP, to make sure you don’t get stuck with the damage when moving out.

Have a tip as a renter or landlord?  Please share them in the comments below!

Posted by: 8zrentals on October 28, 2013
Posted in: Tenants