While ‘school’s out’ for UK students at the end of June, the nightmare begins for the landlords, agents and clerks who will be facing a raft of problems at check-out at the end of the tenancy, according to the Association of Independent Inventory Clerks (AIIC).
Many students are failing to attend the check-out and are leaving properties filthy and are giving the landlord, or agent, no time to clean and make repairs before the new tenants arrive. The fast turnaround of student properties often leads to new tenants having to move into properties that are well below standard.
Pat Barber, Chair of the Association of the AIIC explains: “Traditionally, students tend to leave properties in a state. They don’t worry about cleaning, gardening, putting furniture back in the right places, or even taking out all their belongings. They love to just dump stuff they don’t want in the house and just walk away.
“Students are rarely ready at the booked time for a check-out. This causes problems with not only the inventory carried out by a clerk or a landlord, but also impacts on the tight turnaround of student properties. New students have to book a property several months before the old tenants vacate and generally move in the next day.
“New student tenants often find that the agent or landlord have been unable to sort things out due to the ex-tenants late leaving. Consequently new tenants will just leave the property in the same condition as they found it at the start. It is a vicious circle.
“Following the check-out, the student’s parents – who act as guarantors – often see the check-out report and naturally cause hell, refusing to pay for any damage that their children have caused.
“At one recent property the house was left in a very dirty condition throughout and two of the tenants thought that they could not only leave their personal effects but continue to sleep at the property for another 48 hours. Cleaning contractors had already been booked and new tenants were moving in at 10am the next morning so while hasty telephone calls were made to find temporary beds on friend’s floors all personal items were piled on the front lawn.
“My advice to landlords and agents is to communicate with your tenants. Arrange to visit the property well before the end of tenancy and give written instructions on how they can prepare for their check out. Suggest they may like to use your recommended cleaning and gardening contractors to ensure that they will protect their deposit. Try to make sure that tenants attend the check out and remind them that all keys must be returned and contact details given.
The aim of the AIIC is to ensure that every landlord, tenant and agent in the UK is aware of the importance of the inventory process and the benefits of employing an independent, professional independent inventory clerk.
For further information on AIIC, please visit www.theaiic.co.uk
AIIC independent inventory clerks provide letting agents and landlords with comprehensive inventory documentation, including inventory compilation, check-in procedure, check-out procedure, Tenancy Deposit Schemes and assessment in fair wear and tear.
The AIIC offers membership to current independent inventory clerks and a search facility for agents and landlords to search for local professional independent inventory clerks.
The AIIC also offers industry-leading training courses, open to anyone in the property letting industry, ensuring that proper information and training is available for all members to provide the best possible service.
The AIIC members have all agreed to conduct their business in a professional manner in accordance with the Guidelines to Professional Practice and will abide by the AIIC’s Code of Practice. AIIC members also have Professional Indemnity insurance and Public Liability insurance.
AIIC independent inventory clerks are experts in their field, helping to save landlords, letting agents and tenant’s time, money and hassle by ensuring that government regulations are met.