Top tips for dealing with wear and tear
Wear and tear is simply unavoidable – every landlord would love their property to be given back to them at check out in exactly the same condition as at the start of the tenancy, however even with the most cautious tenant, this is not possible.
If an item is used by a tenant at a reasonable rate, it will one day begin to show signs of wear and tear that will eventually affects both its functionality and appearance – this is something that as a landlord, you will need to incorporate into your costs and is not something that you can claim back from the tenant(s).
Despite the inevitability of wear and tear taking place, it’s important to ask yourself: “Is there anything that I can do to reduce the severity of risks associated with property damage?” When analysing your property’s condition at the end of a tenancy, it’s useful to be aware of factors you can take into account to make the best evaluation of any damages.
Read on to find out what you can take into consideration when assessing “fair wear and tear” and what precautionary methods you can employ to give you the best chance in reducing the effects of wear and tear to help mitigate losses.
Avoiding excessive wear and tear
Building good working relationships with your tenants can be mutually beneficial; it can create channels for open communication regarding the tenancy and will put you in a better position when giving advice on how to maintain and care for the property which can hopefully eliminate unnecessary damages.
If possible, it is advisable to carry out midterm inspections as this means any issues that arise during a tenancy can be identified and resolved before the problem deteriorates, meaning both you and the tenant can avoid unnecessary expenses at the end of tenancy
Check in and check out reports
Ensuring a check in report is carried out at the start of the tenancy helps to establish what the exact condition of the property was like prior to the tenant. Check in reports should be clearly dated and if possible signed by the tenant to confirm their validity. A good check in report is made up of a detailed written account of the property and its contents, supported by photos and in some cases, video.
The above should also be carried out at the end of the tenancy as a check out report – this helps identify any problem areas that need addressing before returning the tenants deposit. Again, it is beneficial if the tenant is present to validate the contents of the report.
Photographs of damages should be kept on file – in the event of a deposit dispute, these will be crucial for your evidence
Stay up to date
It’s vital that you remain up to date on matters relating to fair wear and tear – it allows you to remain vigilant to protecting and maintaining your properties and therefore can help prevent financial losses and save you time.
Check out our disputes resources for further information.