Moving into a new property can be a time of nail-biting anxiety for anyone. For students, it can be ten times worse. It may only be the first or second time you’ve tackled moving into a new home, and maybe the first you’ve done it without the help of your family. As well arranging moving into a new property, tackling property solicitors for the first time, and perhaps moving to an entirely new area, you have to worry about what may seem like the end of the world: the final property inspection.
Your final property inspection doesn’t have to feel like the end of the world
The inspection ensures that you leave the property in the condition that it was bought in, and isn’t in any state of dilapidation. If you leave the property with any form of mess or damage, the seller is going to suffer financial damage trying to sort it out. As well as being a major inconvenience to the seller, it may reflect on their impression of you, and the financial damage may be taken from your deposit.
Preparation is key.
Don’t do what a majority of people do and leave everything until the last minute, panic, and (probably) end up making even more of a mess trying to sort everything out. Regardless of if you live alone or if you live with a group of people, make a list of tasks that need doing before the final inspection well in advance.
If your main concern is rubbish, dirty clothes, or un-washed pots (as it seems to be with most students), sort this out first; it’ll make the rest of the work you need to do miles easier.
Also make sure to sort out what you plan to take with you to the next property. Make three piles, perhaps called something like ‘bin’, ‘recycle/reuse’, and ‘keep’, and sort out items accordingly. It saves time on cleaning when you do move, and saves you packing unwanted items.
One thing that a majority of people seem to forget is cleaning surfaces, floors, and kitchen/bathroom appliances. If they are left unclean, it can often cost quite an amount for the landlord/seller to have to pay to get them professionally cleaned, and it may come out of your deposit.
Take it one day at a time.
If you live by yourself, tackle one or two tasks a day, so the workload doesn’t seem overwhelming. If you live with others, allocate each person a set of tasks. Another way of organising things could be everyone tackling one room a day, or having one person to tackle each room.
Tick off each of these tasks when complete; you’ll feel like you’ve made much more progress than you would if panic-cleaning.
Most importantly of all, make sure to save some time in the day for yourself or for doing work, or reward yourself after a particularly hard day of cleaning. Even better, save yourself the stress and spread the work out over several weeks or a month or two. It’ll feel like much less of a chore.
It can feel like the last thing in the world you want to do after a busy year at university or work, and we totally understand that. The main thing to think about is the huge amount of money, stress, and time you’ll save compared to if you left everything until the last minute, or didn’t bother at all.
If you’re stuck for where to start, the web can be a great source of property advice. Some ready-made property inspection checklists may be available, as well as advice from the property inspectors themselves. Whitehead Monckton are leading property solicitors in Kent and are happy to provide legal property advice to clients needing advice in all areas including dilapidations. For more information visit the Whitehead Monckton website.