End of Tenancy Tips to Ensure You Don't Lose Your Deposit

By Jamie Hill - 14 November 2019

Home and Garden

There are a lot of hassles involved with rent and security deposit, especially if you have a nagging landlord. With some landlords demanding a high-security deposit, it is sometimes difficult to expect them to return it on time. A few of them would conduct a thorough search of the house before you need to empty it, and you just need to sit there and pray for your deposit not to get cut in any manner. Even though you share the most cordial relationship with your landlord, it would turn bittersweet when it is time for the final check to look for signs of damage and level of cleanliness. You need to leave it cleaner than you found it.

To avoid getting your security deposit cut, you can follow a few end of tenancy tips to make sure that you get your entire deposit back. Here are a few of those.

Start with the kitchen

Apart from the bathroom and the toilet, the kitchen can be one of the most unhygienic living spaces in a house if not cleaned on a daily basis, especially because you cook and eat there most of the time. It is also the busiest area of all. It has a tendency to accumulate oil and dirt stains, grease spots, a dirty chimney, dusky walls, and foul smells. You have to be thorough and accurate in cleaning all the tiny spots and corners, especially around the chimney and the oven because these contain some of the most stubborn stains. Do not forget the tiles, the sink, and the countertop.

Be aware

At times, landlords can deduct a certain amount of your deposit for general wear and tear, whereas they are not entitled to it. You need to be aware of the rules and also of the clauses when you sign the contract when moving in. When the house is not damaged up to a certain point, the landlord cannot deduct any amount. If you are not aware of it and you have not educated yourself enough around this information, you can see yourself losing a huge amount unnecessarily. Read and make sure of the rules before you come to an agreement.

Use covers for the furniture

Invest in a few covers and protective layers for the furniture you use in the house. For instance, using sofa covers, mattress covers, blankets for sofas, and tablecloths can avoid unnecessary spills and stains, some of which could have stayed permanently. You can also use rugs and carpets to protect the floor from scratches or any other permanent damage.

Keep track of all documentation

Lack of evidence or important documentation will not offer you the benefit of the doubt, which can lead to the landlord playing sly and deducting your deposit. Make sure you keep a record of all your documents since the day you moved in, along with any other correspondence, information or photographs. The necessary documents that you must have from the beginning to the end include your tenancy agreement, important bills and payments linked with the landlord, check-in inventory and check-out photographs. The absence of any of these can lead to a hassle, which we would want to avoid.

Thorough cleaning of the apartment

Not only the kitchen, but the entire house needs to be cleaned and left spotless like it was the day you moved in. But moving out in itself is a big task to handle with all the packing and transferring. To overcome this problem, you can hire a cleaning agency that can efficiently clean up the entire apartment within a few hours. Agents at royal-cleaning.co.uk say that with the help of experienced cleaners, you can avoid the poor cleaning that you would do yourself, and end up saving a lot of time. Professional cleaning also carries way better equipment than you would, hence giving the best and cleanest results. This is one smart move on saving that huge deposit and not having to worry about the cleanliness.

Avoid breaking things and replace them if you do

If you have rented a place where you are provided with the daily things to use, you need to use them carefully and avoid breaking them. Keep them clean on a regular basis and put them back in a safe place. Even if your clumsy self ends up breaking or damaging something, replace it with a new item and make sure that your landlord is informed about it.

Do not tamper with the walls

Try to not put up stuff or stick anything to the walls of the house. It is not a major issue, but it is better to be safe than sorry. Sure, you like decorating your ‘humble abode,’ but not at the cost of having to pay for repainting or re-plastering the walls. Sticking things is a big no-no. The glue can leave horrific marks on the wall at the end, making it look gooey and ugly. Also, do not drill holes or hammer nails in the walls if not absolutely necessary. Making sure of tiny factors like these can save you from paying a huge cost to the landlord.

Inform your landlord to report

As soon as you move in, be sure to report any problems you see in the house to your landlord. Any small damage discovered, if reported, can encourage the landlord to get it immediately repaired with their own bills. It will also save you the false blame when you decide to move out. Also, if you yourself find any damage, do not jump on to getting it fixed by yourself. Take pictures and share it with your landlord, ask for permission, and then work it out.



Having followed these factors, you have very few chances of not getting your deposit back. Even if you have been a genuine tenant all along and your landlord still does not budge on paying you the full amount, you need to know your rights and take necessary actions. Reporting to the TDS/TDP (tenancy deposit protection scheme) would be one of the last options.


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