There are many reasons why tenants won’t receive all or most of their security deposit back. This is based on our research of tenants we have carried out jobs for.
This list is not listed exhaustive or in any particular order or importance, so don’t sweat it too much. Just ensure you don’t forget any of the items listed, otherwise you’ll be one of those stats that didn’t get their deposit back.
Understand that there are many more things you’ll need to do before you get your deposit back. These are just a few that tenants often forget after their mini cleaning marathon.
1. You Didn’t Clean Behind The Radiators
The vast majority of tenants miss this particular task out. Don’t get me wrong. Their aren’t many landlords or letting agents that will ask you to do this. However, the amount of them that are asking their tenants to clean behind the radiator and get rid of the cobwebs is increasing.
2. You Didn’t Clean Inside The Window Frames
Another one of my favourites. Tenants focus on cleaning the inside windows and some even get the windows cleaned outside too. However, so many people forget to clean in between the window frame.
3. You Didn’t Change The Extractor Filter
A lot of tenants remember to clean all of the appliances in the kitchen. Even the extractor. However, most forget to purchase a replacement grease filter. This small little item that costs about £3 can be the difference in getting all of your deposit back or just some of it.
If you have a local QD Store or a x, you can purchase them from there. If you want to get them online, then take a look at the product links at the bottom of this article.
4. You Cleaned The Carpets Yourself Instead of Getting a Professional Carpet Cleaner In
A lot of tenants believe they can do just as good a job as a professional carpet cleaner, but fail to read their cleaning list properly. Most agents will request that you have your carpets professionally cleaned. That means hiring a professional.
One of the main reasons for this is due to the fact that the cleaning chemicals you are provided by the DIY carpet cleaners has a PH level that is too high to use on your carpets. The machines that you hire are also not powerful enough to extract the vast majority of water and chemical out of your carpet. This means that your carpets will probably be too wet and will start to smell the following day. Thus, the reason why you’re asked to get a professional carpet clean in to clean the carpets.
5. You Didn’t Clean Behind Appliances
One of the main appliances missed in the kitchen is cleaning behind the washing machine. I get it. It’s really heavy and no one is going to look behind there, are they? I’m afraid so. Your letting agent will and they’ll require it to be thoroughly cleaned.
Note: If you have a dishwasher, ensure that is not only cleaned outside, but also cleaned inside too. Especially around the internal edges of the door (where all the grease and muck seems to reside).
6. You Didn’t Clean on Top of The Kitchen Units
Everyone remembers to clean the kitchen unit doors and drawers. In fact, most people take great pride in doing this. However, don’t forget that most agents will require you to clean on top of the kitchen wall units too!
You’ll probably find that the grease build up will be quite high, so one trick is to spray the top of the units with a degreaser and then use a blade to scrape off any grease. Check the list below of where to get hold of this blade. Remember, be careful when using this type of tool in your cleaning and remember to use it at a 45 degree angle.
7. You Didn’t Remove ALL of The Limescale
This job isn’t normally on the list of “forgotten items”, but most shower heads and taps etc are not cleaned properly. I can’t tell you how many times we get called out for just this job alone.
Tip: Spray the sink, taps and shower head with a limescale remover and leave these until the very end. This will allow the chemical time to work on the limescale while you press on with something else.
8. You Didn’t Clean Those Pesky Air Vents
If you have a downstairs cloakroom or utility room, you’ll most likely find an air vent that is full of dust. These will need to be cleaned before you get your deposit back.
What you need – You’ll need a cross head screw driver, and a protective dust mask (can get from local DIY shop like B&Q or see product below this article).
Process – Ensure you either switch off the power or disable the fuse for the vent if it also has an extractor element. These vents normally have 4 screws. Undo the screws clean the vents with a microfibre cloth and then screw back together.
9. You Didn’t Do Everything That You Was Asked To Do
Whatever list you get from your letting agent. Go through each item list and cross them off systematically once you complete the task. That way, you won’t forget to do everything.
10. You Didn’t Get a Professional Company To Carry Out The Clean
Why not arrange for an end of tenancy clean by a cleaning company (you knew I would suggest this). To be honest, if you can afford it, why not arrange for this to be done. That way, you’ll have nothing to worry about leaving you the time to get your new digs sorted out (you know there’s a lot to do there too).
Feel free to print this out for free in PDF Form here –
Most of the products you need can be picked up from B & Q, Aldi or Lidl. No need to go for expensive branded products. I know there are some of you out there that think that the latest Mr Muscle product is a must. Honestly, the cheaper unbranded degreasers and limescale removers do just as a good a job.
If you don’t like trawling around the shops (like me), here’s a few online links if you have time to wait for them to be delivered.
You can purchase your radiator cleaners here – Microfibre Radiator Cleaner – Cleans behind radiators and in other hard to reach areas.
You can get hold of your grease filters here – 2 x UNIVERSAL COOKER HOOD FILTERS WITH GREASE SATURATION INDICATOR.
You can get hold of a cleaning blade for your ceramic hob and on top of the kitchen wall units here – Ceramic Glass Oven Cooker Hob Cleaner Cleaning Scraper Knife
Dust mask for cleaning air vents – Blackspur BB-DM102 Nuisance Dust Mask Set
Disclaimer: The products listed are not recommendations but merely quick links to products you can buy. I haven’t personally tested or used them.