Do I need an inventory?
An inventory is a binding legal document that provides an accurate, comprehensive written record of the condition and contents of a property.
Any deductions for damage, disrepair, cleaning or replacement will be made against the deposit which is held under a Tenancy Deposit Scheme. An inventory compiled by an independent, professional clerk will protect against any unreasonable claims or deductions. Kestrel Inventories has the experience and professionalism to act as an objective third party, providing you reassurance and protection.
How is an inventory different from a check-in?
Check-in reports are produced at the beginning of each tenancy to accurately reflect the property's condition and contents at that time. At check-in, an inventory clerk compares the property with the master inventory. Any amendments are noted on the inventory.
What is a check-out?
Check-out reports are produced at the end of each tenancy to accurately reflect the property's condition and contents at that time. At check-out, an inventory clerk compares the properties contents and condition with the master inventory.
Who pays for the check-in/out?
Typically the tenant pays for the check-out and the landlord pays for the check-in, though procedures may vary between agencies.
Can amendments be made to the master inventory?
Both the tenant and landlord have 5 working days from receipt of the master inventory to submit any suggestions or amendments. If reasonable, these will be incorporated into the master report and the revised document will be resent to all parties concerned.
What is considered fair, wear and tear?
Fair Wear & Tear has been defined in part through the legal process. A tenant cannot be held responsible at the end of a tenancy for changes to a property's condition caused by what the House of Lords has called 'reasonable use of the premises by the tenant and the ordinary operation of natural forces (i.e. the passage of time)’.
A professional inventory clerk uses experience and common sense to assess the many factors present before reaching a judgment as to how much should be allowable for Fair Wear and Tear. Amongst other things they will consider:
Will you wait for tardy tenants?
How long does an inspection take?
This depends on the size of the property, and how heavily the property is furnished. Generally, an inventory will take around an hour to prepare, while a check-in or check-out can be completed in 45 minutes.
What preparations does the tenant need to make prior to check-out?
All personal items must be removed. All cleaning and washing must be completed to the standard the flat was delivered at check-in. (We advise that professionally cleaning receipts be made available for inspection by the clerk.) All items must be returned to positions as listed on inventory. Beds should not be made for ease of inspection. All sets of keys should be returned to the inventory clerk.
Particular attention should be paid to cleaning and maintenance of the following:
~ All paint work including doors, skirting boards and picture rails
~ Windows, curtains and soft furnishings
~ Ceramic tiles and grouting in kitchens and bathrooms
~ Lime scaling to taps, showerheads and dishwasher element
~ Carpets and flooring
~ Kitchen units, cupboards and drawers
~ All kitchen appliances including soap dispensers and filters
~ Defrosting and cleaning of fridges and freezers
~ Extractor fans
~ Light fittings, shades and bulbs
~ Gardens, pathways, driveways and bedding areas
~ Linen and towels
~ Furniture and surfaces
Other useful reminders:
Final meter readings will be provided by the inventory clerk. All utility suppliers along with local council and TV licensing authorities should be advised of your change of address.
Mail forwarding can be arranged with Royal Mail.
Please note that if we are unable to carry out the inspection because the property has not been prepared sufficiently we will charge the agent a cancellation charge which is then deducted from the tenant’s deposit. Furthermore if all keys are not available for return, the managing agent may decide to either charge for additional rent until all sets are returned or instruct a locksmith to replace all the locks at the property at the tenant’s expense.
What if the incoming tenant cannot be present?
It is always recommended that at least one incoming tenant be present at check-in. Alternatively a representative can be appointed to attend on their behalf. If neither of these options is possible, the tenant will always be given 5 working days from receipt of our report to suggest any changes or amendments.
What if the outgoing tenant cannot be present?
It is always recommended that at least one outgoing tenant be present at check-in. Alternatively a representative can be appointed to attend on their behalf. If neither of these options is possible, we request that tenants leave their contact details along with a forwarding address and a copy of any cleaning receipts.