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Moving Process

Making the Move-In and Move-Out Process As Simple as Possible

Moving-in or out of a rental property can be a stressful time. A little preparation can help both tenants and landlords make the move stress-free. Nowadays, a majority of landlords include a checklist together with the rental agreement. This helps the process run smoothly because it spells out the obligations that need to be fulfilled.

Why Do You Need a Move-Out Checklist?
Moving out can be quite nerve-racking. There are many things that a tenant needs to do. A checklist becomes essential so the tenant remembers everything they have to do before, during and after they move.
This way, they get to avoid wrangles with their landlord. It also helps them in retaining their eligibility for a refund on their security deposit.
In most cases, the landlord will attach a move-out checklist with the lease agreement.

What Should A Move-Out Checklist Include?
Bear in mind that a number of factors affect what goes into a move-out checklist. Some of these factors include the location, duration of the tenancy, type of housing, landlord’s requirements, among other requirements specific to the property.
Making sure both parties of the lease agreement understands is always the first step towards a smooth and stress-free move from one home to another.

Here are a few things to include in a move-out checklist:
A Typical Move-Out Checklist

  • Move-out notice: The first item on this checklist should be to notify the landlord of intent to vacate. The notice should be written. A verbal notice is unacceptable. Remember to include moving dates. Also, indicate when it would be ideal for the landlord to bring in interested clients to view the space.
  • Reverting the space to its original form: This involves undoing any changes that were made to the property during tenancy. Whether it’s repainting the space back to its original shade or removing any partitions that were not initially there.
  • Fixtures: Fixtures should be working in mint condition. They include the plumbing, lighting, smoke detectors, and the HVAC system.
  • Appliances: All appliances provided by the Landlord should be working perfectly – the same way they were when the tenant moved in.
  • Landscaping and mowing: Inspect and tend to the landscaping and lawn (if present) to ensure they are as they were in the beginning.

  • Utilities: All pending utility bills should be cleared before move out. Thereafter, reassign the utility accounts back to the landlord or to the incoming tenant – if any.
  • Moving out: This is when you move your belongings out of the house. Ensure you move all your possessions out of the rented space. If there are some you can’t carry, you may opt to sell or discard. You can even talk to the landlord to see whether it is okay to leave them there.
  • Cleaning up: The property needs to be clean and hospitable. The home should be thoroughly clean the space before calling the landlord for the final inspection.
  • Inspection and keys: Once the landlord is satisfied that everything is intact, you can hand in the keys and get a refund of your security deposit.
    With all that done, you’ll have successfully completed your move-out. But, what if you are moving out of one apartment and into another? If that is the case, you may need a move-in checklist as well!
  • A Typical Move-In Checklist
    A move in checklist contains all the items in a move-out checklist. A landlord can use it to organize himself/herself and the property for the tenant.
    Why is a Move-In Checklist Necessary?
    Without a checklist, a tenant is at a serious disadvantage not only during the entire period of the tenancy, but also during a move out as well. Your move-in checklist should detail the condition of the property at move-in. This will help avoid any future surprises. It’ll also ensure a full refund of the security deposit.
    Here are a few things to include in your move-in checklist.

  • The Lease Agreement: This is the most important item in a move-in checklist. That’s because the lease agreement acts as a detailed guide containing the rights and obligations of the tenants. Always read the lease to make sure you understand it. Also, seek clarification on any unclear points. Fully understanding the agreement insulates you from any future disputes with your landlord.
  • Viewing the property: During this time, it is always wise to be extra keen on the property’s condition. Make sure the landlord is present during the viewing. Point out every single tear, breakage, damage, scratch or fade you come across to ensure he or she knows they exist. That way you are not held responsible for the damages when you move out.
  • Fixtures: Ensure all the fixtures are working perfectly. This means checking to see if the security, lighting, plumbing, HVAC and smoke detection systems are running flawlessly.
  • Carpets: If there are any carpets, make sure the landlord is fully aware of any faults. These faults include tears, permanent stains or even any irritating odors emanating from it.
  • Appliances: Ensure that all the appliances provided by the landlord are operational and in good condition.
  • Utilities: Before transferring the utility accounts to your name, ensure that they are debtless and that you and the landlord have co-signed on the meter readings.
  • Inspect the exterior surroundings: If the house you are renting has an exterior landscape or lawn, then taking pictures of the lawn before moving in helps you to have an idea on how to maintain the exterior during your tenancy.
  • Communication: Once you are fully attuned to your new home, the last item on the move-in checklist would be to establish a communication channel between you and your landlord. That way it will be easy to communicate information to each other quickly and efficiently.
  • There you have it! Following these tips will ensure you have a smooth and stress-free move. Unmistakably, there are many things to consider. But at the end of the day, returning the property as close to the original condition is key. It’ll ensure you get most, if not all, of your security deposit back.