Moving out is never a simple process for tenants, but is instead a long and complex one. Below are some hints are tips which will help this process be as smooth as possible. Be sure to have a copy of the inventory at hand, which you will have been sent after you moved in to you, to help you prepare for check-out. The inventory will list the contents of each room and the overall condition of the property. It’s advised that you attend the check-out appointment in person to confirm the details.
Ensure you’ve covered every part of your check-out with our checklist below:
Ensure to contact your local authority and inform them of your moving date and where you’ll be moving to, so they have a forwarding address on file.
Also get in contact with your utility suppliers and let them know you’ll be leaving, then after check-out you can provide the meter reading to officially close your account. Ensure they don’t stop the service unless the landlord says so. Utilities include water and sewage, electricity, gas, telephone and broadband, media services and TV licence. If you have an oil tank or propane gas cylinder this should be topped up to the same level as it was when you moved in.
Change of details
Contact anyone that holds personal details for you and provide them with your new address, such as:
- Insurance company
- DVLA for motor insurance and driving license
- Building society
- Friends and family
- Your workplace
It’s also worth setting up a Royal Mail redirection service for the first few months after check-out.
Condition of property
Before you move out remind yourself of any specific end-of-tenancy requirements for you property (these are usually found in the terms of your tenancy agreement).You should make sure that the property is in the same condition if was let out in and that each term is met. The property may require professional cleaning, depending on the terms, but additional things to consider doing include:
- Clearing out the gutters
- Sweeping out the chimney
- Cleaning the windows (inside and out)
- Dry-cleaning the upholstery, curtains and linen
- Ensuring the garden and/or outdoor space is in a seasonal condition
- Defrost your freezer - this is something many forget to do when they vacate a property. Check out this guide from Which? to find out how to do it.
Make sure all receipts are kept for the above as well where relevant.
Also make sure each item is left where you found it when you checked in, especially if your property was originally furnished. If there are objects which are missing or damaged, tell the letting agent or landlord before checking out to find out how to best replace or repair them. If the property is deemed unfit for check-out, the inventory clerk may cease the appointment and you’ll be charged a cancellation fee.
Remove your belongings
Ensure all your belongings have been removed from the property. It may either involve using packing boxes or hiring a removal service.
Locate all the keys, label them appropriately and return them upon check-out, especially alarm fobs as they can be quite expensive to replace. Also make sure all instruction manuals are located and left in the property.
Inform the bank
When you’ve made the final rental payment, contact the bank to cancel the standing order mandate. They will only act on your instruction and if you don’t inform them of the cancellation they will continue making the payment.
Your deposit won’t be returned to you until both you and the landlord are in agreement and confirm this to the letting agent. If a disagreement occurs, the undisputed amount can be released to you as agreed and the remainder will be kept until an appropriate outcome has been agreed. Depending on your landlord’s service agreement with the letting agent, the agent may negotiate with you and the landlord to return your deposit.