Inventory – I understand that with the deposit schemes (DPS) an inventory is now very important. I am considering doing my own inventory but someone has told me that the inventory must be done by a professional independent inventory clerk. Is this the case?
You are absolutely right that inventories are very important if you put your deposit into one of the Tenancy Deposit Schemes (TDS).
The reason is that if there is any damage you need good evidence if you are to stand any chance of convincing the scheme arbitrator that you have a good claim against the deposit monies held in the scheme.
There is nothing to stop landlords doing their own inventories, and so long as they are thorough, they accurately record the condition of items in the property and they are agreed and signed on each page by the parties – landlord and tenant/s – they will be accepted.
It’s also a good idea to take photographic evidence. These must be printed and ideally two copies – one set attached to the agreement and one set attached to the landlord’s counterpart. All the landlord’s copies of photos must be signed on the back by the tenant and dated at time of entry.
However, there is nothing to beat a professionally prepared inventory done by an independent inventory clerk. This will without doubt carry more weight in any claims process, purely because it is independent and thorough.
Independent inventory companies operate throughout the UK and can be found on our Directory under Inventory Services – see below.
A good independent inventory will cost in the region of £75 to £120 at check-in depending where you are located and the size of the property. A check-out will usually cost between £50 and £100.
Some landlords and most agents will pass this cost on to their tenants by way of administration fees. Others will share this cost, for example, landlord paying the in-going and tenant paying the check-out.
A good way to get your tenant to make a big effort on cleaning and rubbish removal on check out is to say the check-out fee will be waived subject to the place being clean an tidy. This is a big incentive to tenants as they usually need every penny they can get when they are leaving a letting.
©LandlordZONE All Rights Reserved – never rely totally on these standard answers. Before taking action or not, always do your own research and/or seek professional advice with the full facts of the case and all documents to hand.©LandlordZONE® – legal content applies primarily to England and is not a definitive statement of the law; always seek professional advice. Legislation changes, so check dates on these articles. If you have questions go to the LandlordZONE® Forums