Should a Rental Property Be Clean When You Move In?

Moving into a new rental property can be both exciting and stressful. One of the biggest concerns is whether the property will be clean and ready for you to settle in comfortably. At Mycleahomeguide, we understand your worries and are here to help.

Imagine arriving at your new home, only to find dust on the skirting boards, dirt in the kitchen cupboards, and stains on the carpets. Not exactly the fresh start you were hoping for, right? That’s why it’s crucial to know what to expect and what your rights are regarding the cleanliness of your new rental property.

In this article, you’ll learn everything you need to know about the cleanliness standards for rental properties, the responsibilities of landlords and tenants, and how to ensure you move into a spotless home. We’ll also share tips on what to do if the property isn’t as clean as you’d like, potentially saving you time, money, and stress.

Should a Rental Property Be Clean When You Move In

Landlord Responsibilities

When it comes to preparing a rental property for a new tenant, landlords have several responsibilities to ensure the space is clean, safe, and habitable. These responsibilities are often outlined in the tenancy agreement, making it clear what landlords must do before new tenants move in.

Legal Obligations

First and foremost, landlords have legal obligations to maintain their property to a standard that is safe and habitable. This includes making sure all appliances are functional, there are no safety hazards like mold or faulty wiring, and that the overall structure is sound. It’s not just about a fresh coat of paint; the property should be free from serious maintenance issues that could affect the tenant’s well-being.

Cleaning Standards

While there is no legal requirement for landlords to perform a deep clean, the property should be clean to an adequate standard. This generally means that all rooms should be tidy, floors swept or vacuumed, and bathrooms and kitchens sanitized. Hiring a professional cleaner or a professional cleaning company is a common practice to ensure that the property is up to standard for the new tenant.

Addressing Issues from Previous Tenants

Landlords must also address any issues left by previous tenants. If the previous tenant left the property in a poor state, it’s the landlord’s responsibility to fix these problems before the new tenants arrive. This might include repairing any damage and conducting a thorough tenancy cleaning to ensure the property is spotless.

Involving Letting Agents

Many landlords work with letting agents to manage their properties. These agents often coordinate the cleaning and preparation of the property, ensuring that everything is ready for when the tenant moves in. Letting agents can also help document the condition of the property, which is crucial for dealing with any disputes that might arise later.

Impact on Tenancy Deposit

The cleanliness of the property can impact the tenancy deposit scheme. If the property is not in the condition agreed upon in the tenancy agreements, tenants might face issues when trying to get their deposit back. To avoid disputes, landlords should ensure the property is professionally cleaned and all legal obligations are met before the new tenant moves in.

Ensuring a Deep Clean

For the best results, landlords should consider a deep clean of the property. This involves cleaning areas that are often overlooked, such as under appliances, inside kitchen cupboards, and around skirting boards. A deep clean not only makes the property more attractive to prospective tenants but also helps maintain the property’s condition over time.

Tenant Expectations

When moving into a new rental property, tenants have certain expectations regarding the condition and cleanliness of their new home. Understanding these expectations can help ensure a smooth transition and prevent any misunderstandings with your landlord or letting agent.

Cleanliness and Condition

Good Condition: Tenants generally expect the property to be in good condition when they move in. This includes clean floors, sanitized bathrooms, and a kitchen free of grease and grime. Walls should be free of excessive scuff marks or dirt, and appliances should be clean and functional.

  • Professional Cleaning: Many tenants expect that the property will have been professionally cleaned before they move in. This means that the property should be more than just tidy—it should be thoroughly cleaned to a high standard. Hiring a professional cleaning company is a common practice among landlords to meet this expectation.
  • Fair Wear and Tear: While tenants should expect a clean and well-maintained property, they should also be aware of what constitutes normal wear and tear. Minor scuffs on walls or slightly worn carpets are typical in a rented property. However, anything beyond this, such as significant damage or excessive dirt, should be addressed by the landlord before the tenant moves in.

Financial Considerations

  • Cost and Pay: The cost of moving into a rental property can be significant, and tenants often want to ensure they are getting good value for their money. This includes not having to pay for additional cleaning or repairs that should have been done before their arrival. If extra costs arise because the property wasn’t in the expected condition, this can cause frustration and financial strain, so consider the cost of removals into your budged.
  • Inventory and Deposits: Tenants should expect a detailed inventory of the property’s condition at the start of the tenancy. This document is crucial for protecting both the tenant’s deposit and the landlord’s property. If the property is not in the condition described in the inventory, tenants should document this immediately to avoid disputes when moving out.

Using Moving Services

To make the moving process smoother, tenants can consider using a professional man and van service found in the Keep on Movin website. This service can help with transporting belongings efficiently, reducing the stress and workload associated with moving day.

Professional Cleaning Services

Professional cleaning services play a crucial role in ensuring that rental properties are maintained to a high standard. Whether you’re a landlord preparing for a new tenancy or a tenant looking to secure your deposit, professional cleaning can make a significant difference when moving out. You can also consider using a removals service, check here for more information.

Benefits of Professional Cleaning

Should a Rental Property Be Clean
  • Clean Property: One of the primary benefits of hiring professional cleaners is the guarantee of a thoroughly clean property. This means all areas, including often overlooked spots like skirting boards and behind appliances, will be spotless.
  • Landlord Clean: For landlords, a professional clean ensures that the property is presented in the best possible condition to new tenants. This can help attract quality tenants and reduce vacancy periods.
  • Tenant’s Deposit: Tenants who invest in professional cleaning services before moving out can help ensure they get their deposit back. Most tenancy agreements stipulate that the property should be returned in the same condition as when the tenant moved in, accounting for normal wear and tear.

When Should Landlords Clean?

  • Landlord Have to Clean: While there is no legal requirement stating that a landlord must clean the property before a new tenant moves in, it is highly recommended. A clean property not only creates a good first impression but also sets the standard for how tenants should maintain it.
  • Deep Cleaning: Landlords should consider deep cleaning the property, especially if it has been vacant for a while or if the previous tenant left it in poor condition. Deep cleaning involves thorough cleaning of all areas, including carpets, windows, and hard-to-reach spots.
  • New Tenancy Preparation: When preparing for a new tenancy, landlords should aim to provide a property that is not just habitable but also welcoming. This includes making sure that all cleaning is up to a high standard.

What Professional Cleaning Includes

Professional cleaning services typically offer a range of cleaning tasks. These include:

  • Carpet Cleaning: Removing stains and dirt from carpets to restore their appearance.
  • Window Cleaning: Ensuring all windows are spotless and free from streaks.
  • Kitchen Cleaning: Deep cleaning of appliances, countertops, and cupboards.
  • Bathroom Cleaning: Sanitizing all surfaces, removing limescale, and ensuring fixtures are sparkling.

If you are a new landlord, establishing a routine with a professional cleaning company can help maintain the property’s condition and appeal over time.

Choosing the Right Service

When selecting a professional cleaning service, look for companies with good reviews and a reputation for thorough, reliable work. It’s also important to ensure they use high-quality cleaning products and have experience with rental properties. Regularly using the same professional cleaning service can help ensure consistent standards of cleanliness, which is beneficial for both landlords and tenants.

Wondering what to read next? Check out our guide on what to do if you have neighbours that might have a rubbish problem…