Why landlords should always have a professional inventory & check out
A home is usually someone’s most valuable asset, and that goes for rental properties too. However, there can sometimes be a lax attitude among landlords, despite the fact that tenants occupying a property are trusted to keep their asset in good order.
At Jones Robinson we advise that every let property is subject to a professional inventory at the start of the tenancy, as well as a thorough check out at the end. Paul Broomham, Lettings Director at Jones Robinson, is keen to point out that landlords should be meticulous in their approach to their investment: “Any property’s worth is affected by its condition yet a landlord has to have a degree of faith that a tenant will look after their property during the tenancy. A professional inventory at the start is essential and protects both the tenant and the landlord where damage and responsibility is concerned.”
An inventory is a record of the condition of the fabric of the property as well as its contents, noted immediately before a tenant moves in. Everything from the state of the roof, walls and floor coverings to furniture and any white goods supplied is documented. Paul Broomham continues: “Jones Robinson uses Phoenix Inventories & Property Services to conduct our inventories as having an independent third party undertake the checks ensures there is no bias towards the tenant, the landlord or us as a property manager. The use of a professional and impartial company is also vital should there be a problem with a deposit refund, as everything will be accurately documented and verified.”
Matthew Carter-Bennett at Phoenix Inventories & Property Services adds that a good inventory is only validated by a professional check out, which he also provides for Jones Robinson: “Most deposit disputes arise at the end of a tenancy agreement when the landlord and tenant may clash over damage to the property. A professional check out can be compared to the inventory in order to ascertain any damage that a tenant or landlord may be questioning. The inventory/check-out combination is a vital level of protection for everyone in
If you are a landlord and have property to let, or a tenant wishing to find out more about the lettings process, contact the Jones Robinson Lettings Department today.Many landlords consider completing their own inventory but this often lets them down on many levels, says Matthew: “Firstly, landlords often forget to inspect the fabric of the property, including the exterior, windows and work surfaces. If these major components are damaged by a tenant they are costly to fix but without a record of their state at the start of the agreement, the landlord will find it difficult to claim the cost back from the deposit. Secondly, many landlords complete inventories in a hurry. Incomplete lists on scraps of paper can get lost or not stand up to the scrutiny of an ombudsman, should a dispute arise. Lastly, any inventory by a landlord could be deemed as biased by a tenant – impartiality is vital and that’s what a third-party like Phoenix provides.”volved in lettings, and we use photographs to accompany our findings to add another level of accuracy.”