Whether you’re a student who’s looking forward to moving home for the summer or a tenant that is heading off to pastures new, it’s well worth consulting your tenancy agreement before you leave.
Nowadays, landlords are keen to ensure that their property is ready to let out immediately after a tenant leaves. This means that the house or flat needs to be in the same condition as when they first moved in, with any repairs and cleaning carried out by the occupier. To ensure that this happens, most landlords will request that tenants pay a security deposit and sign a legally binding contract.
Within this contract there is likely to be a range of terms and conditions for you to abide by, some of which may be related to the cleanliness of particular appliances and furnishings. For instance, some will request that all curtains and carpets are professionally cleaned, particularly if you have children or animals living in the property. This isn’t a way of punishing tenants, it’s just to guarantee that everything is in a liveable condition for future inhabitants.
This may also extend to other areas of the home too, including the oven. Regardless of how long you’ve been in a property, there’s a good chance the oven has been used a fair few times. Every time you cook food, grease and spillages can build and filters can become blocked. This has a knock-on effect on the functionality of the appliance, taking more time to bring it up to temperature and possibly even emitting unpleasant smells or smoke.
Whilst some are happy to allow tenants to clean it themselves, others will want a receipt from an oven cleaning service to prove that the work has been done fully. As mentioned, a lot of the mess within an over, just as with carpets and furnishings, isn’t necessarily only on the surface. Whilst you can wipe down the inside and remove most of the grime, there is still a chance that some spillages and dirt could remain or that the filters won’t get touched.
A DIY job could also result in expensive damage, which has to be considered. Removing the enamel or damaging any of the working parts of an oven could have a long-term impact and may even require a replacement. If you use a professional cleaning service, any damage will be covered by their insurance and can be dealt with swiftly. Essentially, it is your ticket to avoiding any repercussions.
Failing to comply with any of the terms stipulated within the contract may result in the loss of a portion of your deposit. This can take some tenants by surprise, particularly if they were banking on receiving it back in full. So whilst some landlords offer relaxed contracts and are happy to accept certain wear and tear, it’s always worth looking at your agreement before you plan to move out – particularly if you would like to avoid an unpleasant surprise.
Are you a student at College or University? If so, then at this time of year you’ll be gearing up towards the end of term, getting all of your assignments in and start preparing for your exams. It’s busy and stressful, and you probably don’t have time to do much else. Does this mean you can still neglect your cleaning duties? It shouldn’t that’s for sure.
Ensuring your student house stays clean and tidy is important. It’s part of your tenant’s agreement, and if and when you leave, your landlord will inspect your accommodation for its cleanliness and to see if there’s been any damage to the property and its furnishings. If there has been, you won’t get all of your deposit back, as this will be used to help pay for any repairs or professional cleaning duties.
Now, understandably, this is the last thing on your mind, as you approach the crunch period of your education. However for some, this does present a perfect time in which to get your house sorted, especially if you’re going to be moving out soon after your exams have finished.
Some students actually prefer to get cleaning and tidying sorted before they crack on with University and College work. It’s a way of putting off the inevitable and there’s some truth in the old adage that you can tell when a group of students have plenty of work to do, as their home will be immaculate.
However for others, the problem is time; where are you going to get the time from to clean your house? Well you don’t have to worry because there are plenty of professional cleaning services of which you can take advantage.
When it comes to cleaning your flat though, it’s important that you consider all rooms, especially those that are the dirtiest and often the most used. For students, this is the kitchen. It’s an important place to get clean too, as it needs to be hygienic for your own health and wellbeing. This means getting the floors, surfaces and even the cupboards clean, but also all of your appliances and even behind them where grease and grime builds up the most.
Above anything else though, in your student kitchen the one thing that desperately needs to get cleaned is your oven. It’s the appliance that is used the most, because it’s quick and easy to use; remember all those pizzas and oven chips? It’s also an area that is often neglected, and one that causes students to lose their deposits as a result. So don’t neglect your oven, get it cleaned as soon as you can this spring.
If you do decide to do this yourself, be sure to use caustic-soda free cleaning products. This will prevent damaging your oven with a corrosive chemical, which could cost you a considerable amount more if your landlord needs to get the oven fixed or repaired as a result.
Alternatively, you could use the services of a professional oven cleaning company. Not only do they know what they’re doing, as well as using the right cleaning products, but it also means you don’t have to worry about getting your oven cleaned during this busy time of year, and can concentrate on your studies instead.
It’s always a nervous time of year for students. Not only are they awaiting important exam results, but many are moving out of rental properties and awaiting news on their deposits. Just as good grades can’t be guaranteed, neither can full refunds; however, there are certainly ways of helping to get most, if not all of your money back after tenancy.
First of all you need to review your tenancy agreement. There are plenty of people in this world who are more than happy to sign important contracts without properly reviewing the terms, but when it comes to moving out this lethargy can come back to haunt you.
More often than not, landlords will stipulate that any tenant has to ensure that the house is properly maintained. This doesn’t mean giving it a quick once over just before you leave. Landlords often demand that it is left exactly as it was when you moved in, enabling them to let it out immediately. Failure to do this will inevitably lead to money being removed from your initial deposit.
The deposit is very much a safety net for landlords or letting agencies. It shouldn’t be used to subsidise revenue or blackmail tenants, but it is there to ensure that if the home, furniture or appliances are damaged, that any repairs can be paid for.
But even if you haven’t caused any damage per se, you could still be liable for any cleaning that needs to be done after you vacate the home. Many people are unduly worried about getting the carpets back to perfect condition, which will need to be done, but forget to give their kitchen the attention it needs.
This isn’t particularly sensible, particularly as it is probably the biggest dirt trap in any home. In a student house, where there is likely to be a number of inhabitants, each of whom works to a different standard of cleanliness, filth can quickly pile up. Whether it’s grease in the cupboards, stains on the floor or grime in the oven, it’s important that you deal with it effectively.
Some people are often surprised to find that their tenancy contract includes a special mention when it comes to the state of the oven. As it is such an important and well-used appliance, it is important that it is properly maintained. This means ensuring that it is thoroughly cleaned, and not just a quick surface clean.
In fact some contracts will stipulate that it must be professionally cleaned, with all receipts and invoices to prove that it has been done. Failure to do so could result in the landlord paying for it to be cleaned again, taking the money from your deposit. Therefore even if you have invested the time in scrubbing off the surface dirt, it could well be in vain anyway.
Therefore the lesson to be learnt here is that if your contract says your oven needs to be cleaned, then you need to make sure that it is. If you try to take the easy or cheap way out, you may well end up paying twice. This is why companies like Ovenu are happy to offer students a cost effective valeting service. You’ll get a spotless oven and hopefully secure the whole of your deposit when the time comes to move.