To prevent issues arising with the landlord when leaving a rented property, a tenant should:
- The day before the contract ends or the day before leaving the property, contact telephone, water, gas and electricity providers to pay the pending bills and to cancel contracts with them. Also, to prevent any incorrect future payments being made from that bank account, better to change the name and details of the billing account. This can be left to the landlord, but we strongly advise that the tenant does this as it takes a very short amount of time and can prevent future upsets with the owner of the property.
- On the day of leaving the property the tenant must visit the property with the owner to sign documentation regarding the state of the property, and the remaining rights of both parties. If there is no damage, neither party will have any future rights, the keys will be handed in, the deposit will be returned and the contract ends there. Unfortunately, if there is damage, the deposit may be kept by the landlord, and a contract must be signed by both parties stating the remaining rights of each half.
- Whether or not the property has been left with or without damage, we recommend taking photos of all of the rooms in case they are later needed for proof. The tenant may have to prove in court that the damages were not caused by them, and photos can be a great help.
- If the landlord refuses to accept the keys back, make sure to send them a burofax or telegram reporting that you’re leaving keys into the post box or similar, always with receipt acknowledged.
- If 10 days after leaving the property the landlord has not offered to reimburse the deposit or has not presented a written list of damages, make sure to legally demand the return of the deposit, this will help a lot if future legal action is required.