From holes in the wall to stained bench tops, we’ve seen it all…
Getting your bond back can be harder than you expect. According to financial comparison site Finder, 1 in 3 Aussie renters lose part or all of their bond when they move out.¹
We’ve listed six tips to ensure your full bond makes it back quickly into your bank account.
1. Ongoing maintenance
Ideally, getting your rental bond back should be something you think about during your entire tenancy, rather than only at the end. If you stay on top of general home maintenance, like watering your garden, cleaning regularly and fixing things as they break, then your task list will be substantially reduced upon finishing your tenancy, and subsequently you’ll have an easier time getting your rental bond back.
2. Refer to your entry report
We always tells people when they move in that the most important document during a tenancy is the entry report. Note down any existing issues of the property on the entry report because that’s ultimately going to cover you at the end of the lease. Tenants have three days to add their own comments to the report, so ensure you do a thorough assessment.
When completing the entry report, we take a lot of photos because people often miss writing things down. We can’t stress enough how important it is to fill out your entry report property. For example, if there’s a dent in the wall and you’ve written the issue down then you don’t need to worry about repairing it on exit.
When it comes time to clean and repair the property, make sure you refer to the entry report to clarify the property’s original state because that’s ultimately what property managers use as the single source of truth.
3. Bond clean
Perhaps the most important factor contributing to getting your rental bond back is cleaning.
As a tenant, you must be aware of the property’s condition before you entered and ensure it is returned in that state, with consideration given to reasonable wear and tear.
The best way to make sure the property is left spotless is to employ a bond cleaner. Most bond cleaners guarantee their work, so if there’s an issue with the cleanliness of the property, they’ll revisit the property for free to correct it.
We say most people think they’re able to do it themselves, however the average person will never be able to do a bond clean properly. If the average person were to do it, it would take them days to get it to the standard required. While it does add an extra cost to the move, it’s generally worth it in the end because it means it’s one less thing for you to worry about at moving time when you have plenty of other concerns.
Make sure you know exactly what is involved in your bond clean, as when it comes to exiting a rental property, out of sight certainly doesn’t equal out of mind. This means cleaning the window sill tracks, removing all traces of pets, dusting light shades, ensuring lights are working and that insects are cleared out.
Request a detailed invoice from your cleaner about what you’re covered for and don’t be afraid to contact your property manager and ask for a full list of what needs to be cleaned. Property managers are here to help you and make the entire process as smooth as possible.
4. Yard refresh
In our experience, tenants often forget that the yard is considered part of the house. Just like the house, the yard needs to be returned to the state it was in upon your entry. If things have died or the garden is overgrown, you’re obliged to replant and tidy it to its original state. Keep in mind that new plants will require additional watering, so be prepared to pay water compensation.
5. Exit requirements
There are a few final requirements required upon your exit to tidy up all loose ends. Often these get overlooked, but it’s integral to:
- Empty your street bins
- Return all the keys that were given to you on the day you vacate. If you’ve lost some, get copies made
- Remember to leave your power on for at least three days after you vacate, so the property manager can check all the light bulbs and fittings
6. Complete all payments
The final hiccup in getting your rental bond back is settling all payments. The rental department will ensure your rent is paid up to date and will also finalise your water costs. Before your bond is finalised, expect a water bill after vacating as urban utilities backdate their water. This bill can be paid directly, or the cost can be taken from your bond.
Once the property is checked for damage and bills are settled, then your rental bond goes back into your bank account.
1. Finder, 2018
Article by Laura Sinclair