In the last 10 years landlords and letting agents have come under increasing pressure as a result of the changes in legislation here in the UK to perform more and more tasks, e.g. Energy Performance Certificates, Portable Appliance Testing, Gas Safe Certificates, Deposit Scheme Protection, House in Multiple Occupancy Licencing. A further consequence of this is the need for a detailed document to prove the rental property’s features, fitting and items including a details statement of their condition called an Inventory Report. One way for agents or landlords to cope with these increased demands is to outsource several tasks to a specialist inventory service such as A+ Inventories as specialist residential inventory firm.
A good tenancy agreement (AST) will contain several clauses with regard to the property’s initial inventory, interim inspection/s and tenant check out. The Initial inventory form part of the legal agreement between the landlord and the tenant and should be prepared to protect the interests of the property owner and the tenant.
What the inventory clerk does?
Before the tenant is due to occupy the rental property, the owner or agent arranges for an inventory clerk to visit the property. The inventory clerk inspects the property and prepares a detailed report descripting all the features and items of the dwelling, this includes ceiling, doors, wall, floors, window, heating, all types of furniture, electrical fittings, curtains, etc. including their professional view on the properties condition including photographs to support any statements made. This must be signed by the tenant the landlord or their representative.
During the tenancy, the inventory clerk may be asked to revisit the property to ensure the tenant is maintaining the property as per the Assured Shorthold Tenancy.
Then on the day that the tenant is to move out the clerk will revisit the property and checking the inventory/check-in report making note of any fair wear and tear and damage and report these changes back to the agent or landlord.
Benefits for a landlord utilising the services of an independent inventory service
- The most important benefit is the inventory clerk is independent and does this job on a daily bases they will know how to produce a document that, should the need arise, can be truly helpful in dispute resolution, before it gets to tribunal.
- If you need to make an insurance claim a professional independent document would aid in such claims, and makes it easier for the insurers to assess your claim.
- It will save you time and hassle and in the long run money too.