A Handy Move-Out Checklist for Tenants

Posted by Teresa on December 3, 2010 under Landlord Paperwork and Forms, Landlord Tips | icon: commentBe the First to Comment

tenant screening, tenant background checkHave a tenant moving out? Wouldn’t you love for him or her to leave your rental unit in a state that will make you smile? Why not just tell them exactly what you want? Sometimes tenants need to know your expectations. While there are no guarantees they will fulfill them, providing them with a tenant move-out checklist can make that more of a possibility.

And since most tenants want their entire security deposit returned, following a list can help them achieve that goal. A little education and open communication can go a long way toward a win-win situation for both landlord and tenant. Here are some items you might want to include on your list.

Move-Out Check List for Tenants

  • All trash removed from premises, including patio and storage unit
  • Closets emptied and vacuumed or mopped
  • Bathroom clean, including tub, sink, toilet, vanity drawers, shelves, floor and baseboards
  • Kitchen clean, including inside of cabinets and drawers, counters, sink, baseboards and floor
  • Disposal in working order
  • Refrigerator empty and clean, including shelves, drawers and door (do not turn off)
  • Freezer empty and clean
  • Dishwasher empty and clean
  • Stove top and oven clean, including range hood
  • Broiler pan clean
  • Nails removed from walls
  • Any spilled paint cleaned up
  • Locks on windows and doors in working order
  • All window blinds clean, in place and in working order
  • Carpets vacuumed
  • Linoleum and tile floors cleaned and mopped
  • All ceiling fixtures, with light bulbs
  • Windows clean
  • Ceiling fans clean
  • No carpet stains
  • No scuffs on walls and floors

Starting with a list will help ensure that tenants are meeting your expectations—and help them get their security deposit back.

Move Out Day Tips for Landlords

Posted by Teresa on August 9, 2010 under Landlord and Tenant FAQs, Rents and Deposits | icon: commentBe the First to Comment

tenantscreeningblogWhen a tenant informs you that they will not be renewing their lease, provide them with move-out instructions. Written notice of your expectations is always a good idea when it comes to dealing with tenants.

What Should Move Out Instructions Cover?

  1. The first item should be that a written move-out notice is required from the tenant. This helps clear up any possibility of confusion over dates and terms of the move-out.
  2. Ask the tenant to provide an address to which you can return the security deposit, after deducting legitimate expenses for repairs or cleaning.
  3. Inform the tenant you will be contacting them to conduct the move-out inspection. Let them know this is not optional: you will need the tenant to be present to initial and sign the inspection list.
  4. Let the tenants know that according to the terms of the lease, the unit must be returned to the same condition it was in when they moved it. If they’ve painted a different color on the walls, they need to repaint it. If they don’t clean the unit thoroughly, you can hire cleaners and deduct the fee from the tenant’s security deposit. Any damage repair costs will also be deducted from the deposit.
  5. If there is a fireplace in the unit, let tenants know they must have it professionally cleaned before moving.
  6. Tenants might not know that the last day of the lease is the day they must be out. Inform them that any extra days will be charged a prorated amount of their monthly rent. To calculate daily rent, divide the total rent by 30.
  7. Ask the tenant to set the thermostat at whatever temperature you prefer.
  8. Utilities need to be transferred to you or turned off, according to what works for you. If ther is another tenant lined up, then obviously you don’t need to turn them off. Let the tenant know to inform the utility companies, including gas, electric, cable, water and sewer, of the last day they will be in the space. Warn them not to have the utilities transferred or turned off until the end of the last day of their lease.
  9. Let the tenant know where to leave any extra trash and where to drop off the keys.

One thing landlords can count on is that eventually, all of their tenants will move out. Whether it’s a good thing or bad, it can be a smooth process when you’re organized and approach each move-out the same way.