PDA

View Full Version : Cleaning property at the end of the tenancy



carebear.1981
23-04-2008, 11:20 AM
Hi all

We will shortly be leaving our house and I was wondering to what level the landlord would expect it to be cleaned?

We have a dog and 2 cats and although the landlord does not normally allow pets he agreed to let us rent the property.

When we moved in the property was not particularly clean, we were the first tenants in, the property having been lived in by owner/occupier previously, and we had to clean throughout before moving in. In addition, the yard was full of pots with dead plants in (left by the owner/occupier), these are still there. The landlord refused to have the carpets cleaned because of the pets.

We have decided that we will clean the carpets in the bathroom, living room and our bedroom (the bedroom one was stained before we moved in). We will be using a domestic carpet cleaner, and this is simply to ensure there is no animal smell, although our animals have not urinated/defecated in the house, it is just that although we don't notice it, other people probably will.

I intend to go through the house and do things like give the inside of windows the once over, give the kitchen cupboards a clean (although they have had a funny smell to them since we moved in which we have been unable to get rid of).

Are we expected to do any more than what I would call a good "spring clean"?

Thanks

carebear.1981
23-04-2008, 12:54 PM
Anyone??????

Ericthelobster
23-04-2008, 13:22 PM
Anyone??????Whaddya mean, "anyone?". Don't you think 90 minutes is just a little bit soon to start rattling your cage, when you're asking strangers to give you free advice?

Contrary to what you might think, there aren't armies of landlords out there with fingers poised above their keyboards waiting for you to ask them questions.

Donething
23-04-2008, 13:35 PM
I have just had a look at my last tenancy agreement and it states the following:

"To clean to a good standard, or pay for the professional cleaning of the Premises at the end of the Tenancy, to the same standard to which the Premises and Fixtures and Fittings were cleaned prior to the start of the Tenancy, as stated in the Inventory and Schedule of Condition".

If there is a similar clause in your tenancy agreement I would make sure you comply with it, then your landlord can't accuse you of anything. I would take extra special care to make sure there is no evidence of pet damage/dirt, however clean you think your animals are. Your landlord might have different ideas.

If you clean it to a better standard than it was originally when you took up the tenancy, there is no room for argument. Better safe than sorry.

Mrs Jones
23-04-2008, 14:58 PM
The AST agreement my tenants sign states that they have to have all carpets professionally cleaned at the end of the tenancy (and no pets allowed I'm afraid) so the advice about leaving the place in the best state possible is good advice.

If you ever need a reference for a future tenancy, you can then be sure that it will be a good one.

carebear.1981
23-04-2008, 15:02 PM
Whaddya mean, "anyone?". Don't you think 90 minutes is just a little bit soon to start rattling your cage, when you're asking strangers to give you free advice?

Contrary to what you might think, there aren't armies of landlords out there with fingers poised above their keyboards waiting for you to ask them questions.

I'm sorry for thinking after 23 views there might have been someone amongst that number that had an opinion on this. I now take the stance that if you don't have anything nice to say you shouldn't say anything at all.

Sorry if I offended you, I just wanted to obtain some information to help me be a good tenant, which from reading most of the posts on here makes me something of a rarity!

carebear.1981
23-04-2008, 15:05 PM
I have just had a look at my last tenancy agreement and it states the following:

"To clean to a good standard, or pay for the professional cleaning of the Premises at the end of the Tenancy, to the same standard to which the Premises and Fixtures and Fittings were cleaned prior to the start of the Tenancy, as stated in the Inventory and Schedule of Condition".

If there is a similar clause in your tenancy agreement I would make sure you comply with it, then your landlord can't accuse you of anything. I would take extra special care to make sure there is no evidence of pet damage/dirt, however clean you think your animals are. Your landlord might have different ideas.

If you clean it to a better standard than it was originally when you took up the tenancy, there is no room for argument. Better safe than sorry.

We will certainly be cleaning to a better standard than when we moved in.

We never received an inventory or schedule of condition. The letting agent told us on several occasions that she had completed the same and would forward to us for signature, but we never received them! Does this put us in a difficult position?

glantisant
23-04-2008, 15:39 PM
If I was you (and I was a week or so ago) I would contact your landlord and ask him what he/she is expecting, and cross reference that with any specific t&c on the the agreement you signed.

After that, it really depends on your own thoughts. Whenever we've left a property, be it owned by us or rented, a deep clean never does any harm.

carebear.1981
23-04-2008, 15:41 PM
If I was you (and I was a week or so ago) I would contact your landlord and ask him what he/she is expecting, and cross reference that with any specific t&c on the the agreement you signed.

After that, it really depends on your own thoughts. Whenever we've left a property, be it owned by us or rented, a deep clean never does any harm.

Thanks, I will double check the t&c's tonight.

Do you think we will be ok leaving the yard as it was when we moved in? I intend to brush and bleach it (obviously the dog has done his business out there), but is it ok to leave the pots with dead plants in them? As this was how things were when we moved in!

JimBeam
23-04-2008, 15:46 PM
In my experience Jeyes Fluid is more effective to clean a yard than bleach. Easily picked up from a DIY store, mix it as per instructions with water, sluice down the areas, give it a brush with a yard brush and away you go. :)

carebear.1981
23-04-2008, 15:47 PM
In my experience Jeyes Fluid is more effective to clean a yard than bleach. Easily picked up from a DIY store, mix it as per instructions with water, sluice down the areas, give it a brush with a yard brush and away you go. :)

Cheers for the tip, will go to B&Q tonight

Donething
25-04-2008, 14:15 PM
We will certainly be cleaning to a better standard than when we moved in.

We never received an inventory or schedule of condition. The letting agent told us on several occasions that she had completed the same and would forward to us for signature, but we never received them! Does this put us in a difficult position?

Your letting agent was not doing her job properly then. All tenants should receive these documents. Have you spoken to her about it? Did she ever prepare them, even if she didn't send them? Not sure where you would stand on this one, no doubt some people with more experience than I could tell you.

My last tenant left our house in an absolutely filthy state and is paying for it dearly now. She didn't clean the place when she lived in it, let alone when she left (apparently she "didn't do housework", which was blatantly obvious). And she'd never let us in for an inspection either. Because the LA has all the documentation to hand and proof of the previous condition of the property, she looks likely to lose most of her deposit in cleaning and decorating bills. So play safe and clean like you've never cleaned before!

carebear.1981
25-04-2008, 14:38 PM
Your letting agent was not doing her job properly then. All tenants should receive these documents. Have you spoken to her about it? Did she ever prepare them, even if she didn't send them? Not sure where you would stand on this one, no doubt some people with more experience than I could tell you.

My last tenant left our house in an absolutely filthy state and is paying for it dearly now. She didn't clean the place when she lived in it, let alone when she left (apparently she "didn't do housework", which was blatantly obvious). And she'd never let us in for an inspection either. Because the LA has all the documentation to hand and proof of the previous condition of the property, she looks likely to lose most of her deposit in cleaning and decorating bills. So play safe and clean like you've never cleaned before!

Thanks, as I said before I intend to clean it thoroughly, which will mean it is much cleaner than it was when we moved in. I have emailed our letting agent to ask her what she wants us to do with all the dead plants in the yard, we are going to the tip with our old sofa anyway so can easily get rid if she wants us to, but she has not replied!!!!

She has been pretty useless since day one! I got a nasty letter from a debt collection agency about a gas bill from my previous address from October 2007 to early this year. Not my debt, I moved out in July 2007! They said they needed to see a copy of our signed tenancy agreement. I could not find it (not entirely sure I ever received it) so asked for a copy! That was 3 months ago and I still haven't received it! Luckily the debt collection agency took a letter from my previous letting agent as proof the debt was not mine!

Another thing I noticed in our tenancy agreement. It states that we have to flea treat the house before we vacate! Now, I use stronghold spot on on our pets which not only treats our pets for fleas, but also treats the environment. We use this every month regardless of the time of year as recommended by our vet. Do we still need to flea treat the house as stated? I will do it if absolutely necessary, but the good stuff, which actually works will cost us quite a bit and does not smell at all nice! (I would ask our letting agent if I could get hold of her!)

Thanks

Ericthelobster
25-04-2008, 17:46 PM
Another thing I noticed in our tenancy agreement. It states that we have to flea treat the house before we vacate! Now, I use stronghold spot on on our pets which not only treats our pets for fleas, but also treats the environment. We use this every month regardless of the time of year as recommended by our vet. Do we still need to flea treat the house as stated? I will do it if absolutely necessary, but the good stuff, which actually works will cost us quite a bit and does not smell at all nice!If that's what you've signed up to in the contract, then yes.

However if I were you, if you have documentary evidence that you've used this flea treatment, I would suggest to the agent that it would be superfluous, and (crucially) be far better for the landlord due to the lack of smell. And you could offer to put something in writing to the effect that you are perfectly happy to pay for flea treatment if there should be any evidence of a problem in the next X months (assuming the next tenant isn't a pet owner!).

They might swallow it.

heather5
25-04-2008, 19:44 PM
I'm a single tenant without pet - have been in rented properties for over 20 years - never owned.

I currently rent in an area where even a studio is subject to close inspection by freelance "check-in/check-out" inventory clerks - paid for by me - as a result of my contract - both in and out - no matter what it's a standard fee of £80 in both cases - £160 total.

How do I know they are freelance - I asked. Particularly when the last one took almost 1/2 a day's leave to check me in.

I was absolutely paranoid about leaving my last few properties - parnoid to the point of getting professional painters in to paint the whole property although I had one scratch mark on the paintwork.

But during the conversations with these particularly petty LAs - I asked just what was I supposed to achieve?

I had curtains cleaned, carpets cleaned - and the total almost came to my deposit. Was staggered at the cost of curtains for a 1 bed house.

BUT I was told that what I did was unnecessary - by the LA - as it was only if I had pets that I needed to go to that extreme.

They said that if I had pets - agreed or otherwise - then I must clean the carpets and have the curtains cleaned in addition to making sure there was not more than normal wear and tear damage.

I know of plenty of people who rent - without approval - and have pets - and have just had the carpets cleaned - 'cos it's the obvious area it shows up - but never cleaned the curtains.

Obviously, if you rent somewhere that has a sofa, etc - or is part furnished - you'll have to look at that.

But that seems to be the norm with LAs that are really hot on this stuff - but then I live in Bucks so I think that may be a reason.

Hope this helps.

justaboutsane
26-04-2008, 07:07 AM
If there is no inventory then just make it nice and clean and you will be fine. LL cannot retain the deposit and if they do you SUE! No Inventory = no deductions and as Tenant you will win.

PaulF
27-04-2008, 18:21 PM
The last post is about the most sensible one as the rest are just waffle.

Mrs Jones - the clause in your tenancy agreement about "professional cleaning" can safely be ignored. You are only obliged to leave the property in a similar state of cleanliness when you took it on, and if you can do a decent job yourself then that's all you have to do.

caroline7758
27-04-2008, 18:38 PM
Working on a bond scheme, the most common claims we get are for cleaning, and usually at an extortionate rate, particularly from agents- I'm sure they add something on to the bill before they pass it on to us. I am now particularly careful to note the level of cleanliness on the inventory when the tenant moves in.