The Check-In Report – Getting it rightSeptember 27, 2017 10:37 am
For any Letting Agent who is serious about managing their clients property and protecting their investment, a good, detailed written inventory and statement of condition at the start of any tenancy is paramount. As a growing Letting Agent spanning both north and south of the border we have acquired a number of smaller firms over the years and the difference in the quality and manner of Inventory;s or ‘Check-in’ Report’s has been staggering. One agent carried out no written report but simply walked around the property with a video camera, needless to say that sort of report wouldn’t stand up to scrutinization nowadays. As a landlord myself, I want to know that, should the tenant be responsible for any cleaning or damages at the tenancy end, I am able to recover my costs from the security deposit.
Prior to the introduction of the TDS (Tenancy Deposit Scheme) this was fairly simple, as the letting agent would hold the deposit therefore, the agent had full control over dispersing the deposit between landlord and tenant as they saw fit. If the tenant felt the deductions were unfair or unreasonable their only recourse would be to apply to the courts. Since the introduction of the Tenancy Deposit Scheme the law has effectively done a U-turn with the responsibility now completely on the landlord to prove that any claim is valid and provide documented evidence to substantiate their claim. As such the responsibility of the Letting Agent is to ensure that evidence is as strong as possible.
Carrying out a detailed, written report (with supporting photographs) at the start of each tenancy is the only way to ensure dilapidations can be recovered. When our staff undertake an Inventory/condition report every part of the landlords fixtures and fittings are listed from the window handles to the wall sockets, not just the colour of the walls! Put simply ‘ If its not listed on the check-in report, you cant claim damages for it’
As members of Propertmark (ARLA) we take our business seriously and that means looking after our clients interests. If you have a property you are looking to rent or simply want advice on some aspect of renting feel free to contact one of our local branches, we would love to hear from you.