Things to do before moving in and out of a tenancy

Get advice and answers to all your renting concerns

Paperwork is a boring yet necessary part of the process of moving into a new home. It’s needed to prove that you are you and that you’re able to pay for the place you want to move into. Not only is it a big part of moving in; it’s also a key component of ending a tenancy when you’re ready to live elsewhere.                                                        

In this blog post, we will talk you through what to do before you begin tenancy and what to do when you’re ready to end it and move to a new home.

Starting a tenancy

Paying a deposit

You should have enough money saved to pay a deposit to the landlord or letting agency. This is typically the same amount as a month’s rent. Then, you’ll be issued a document proving that you’ve paid the deposit; keep this safe until you’re ready to move out so you can get it back.

Paying the rent itself

On the subject of payment, set up a Direct Debit with the landlord/letting agency so you can pay the rent when it’s meant to be due. This can be done easily enough by filling in a form and posting it to the relevant address, though you could also do this through your bank if you have the right details to hand.

Utilities and insurance

So that you have working water, electricity, gas and broadband, ensure all of these are set up weeks in advance of you moving in. As for insurance, if you use a price comparison website, you can get contents cover for under £10 per month. Make sure that the package you buy covers the value of your entire contents - appliances, clothes, furniture and gadgets.

Change of address

For your important post - payslips, bank statements, utilities, subscriptions - make sure that they know your new address. This should be easy enough to do - just make a phone call or send an email notifying them of your move.

Ending a tenancy

Contact the property manager

The first and arguably most important step in ending a tenancy, you should get in touch with the property manager or point of contact for the letting agency. When doing so, tell them you want to leave and give them a specific date.

Leaving the property as you found it

A must when moving out, it’s important to clean your soon to be ex-home from top to bottom. This should take a couple of days, depending on how much you have to pack up and what needs to be cleaned, if anything. The cleaner the property is, the more likely you are to get your deposit back in full.

Arrange a property inventory

This is essential to check that everything in the property is working and that it’s in a good state. Your letting agent should do this for you, but if this isn’t possible, you could carry out an inventory for yourself. If forced to do the latter, you must check all the furniture, appliances and rooms, write it all down on a piece of paper, sign it and send it to the agent.

Give yourself time

When ending a tenancy, you should give yourself ample time to pack, fill in all the important paperwork, clean up and check that the flat is spotless so that someone else can move in as when they want to. Give a month’s notice to the letting agents so that you’re able to pack without having to rush around at the last minute.

Hand over the keys

On the day your tenancy comes to an end, you need to hand over the keys and any spares you were given to the property manager. Giving them all of the important paperwork is a must too, so keep all of that somewhere that’s safe yet easy to find, like on a bedside table.

Find somewhere new to move to

Moving out can take a while, but you should have somewhere new to move into. If that’s not possible, you could move back in with your family, other relatives or close friends; whichever is most feasible. Wherever you move, make sure to change the address for your bank account, payslips and so on, like you would when moving in.

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