Deposits can be an expensive part of renting student accommodations. That’s nothing new; however, when you’re wondering whether the landlord will return the deposit back or not, it can be nerve wracking.
Nothing is worse than finding out you’re not going to get your student deposit back. Or to learn that you’ll only receive a portion of the deposit back. However, there are some steps you can take to improve your chances of receiving the entire deposit back!
Ways to Get Your Deposit Back
Here are several ways you can be sure to get your deposit back on student accommodations.
1). Get a Receipt
Before moving in, get a receipt from the landlord for all funds that have been paid including the deposit. The receipt should have the landlord’s name and address on it. This way, you’ll have proof of what was paid and how much.
2). Take Pictures
Before moving into a new property, take pictures of what it looked like. Label the images with dates and explanations of what they show. Pictures can be used to prove the condition of a property when you moved in. When you move out, do the same thing again.
This way, the landlord can’t make you pay for a stain that was already on the wall when you moved in. This is just one example, but you get the idea. Having visual proof can help get your deposit back.
3). Do an Inventory of the Property with the Landlord
Here’s another idea that can help get your student housing deposit back. Before moving in, see if the landlord will agree to conducting an inventory of the property. In most cases, the landlord will provide you with a checklist before in. Be sure to review this carefully.
As you inventory the property with the landlord, be sure to point out any issues. This may be damage to a light fixture, repairs to the dryer, and more. Once the inventory is completed, you and the landlord need to sign it and date it, showing you both agree to what’s included on the inventory list.
4). Keep All Correspondence Dealing with Repairs
It’s always a good idea to keep all correspondence from your landlord that deals with repairs to the property. This can be done via email, for example. This way you have proof of what’s been said on both sides. You wouldn’t have this proof if all communications are done via the phone or in person.
5). Make Sure Your Deposit is in a Deposit Protection Scheme
This mostly applies to private landlords, who are required to keep all deposits in a deposit protection scheme. This is a government-run program that keeps landlords from holding onto deposits when they shouldn’t.
6). Has Everyone Paid Rent?
If everyone’s not paid their share of the rent, this could cause the landlord to keep the deposit. Another issue is if the rent wasn’t paid one month. In these cases, the deposit will be withheld.
If you have a joint tenancy, then you’re liable for any rent that’s gone unpaid. So, check to make sure everyone’s paid their share of the rent. And if they haven’t, then they need to pay as soon as possible.
7). Ensure the Housing is Clean and in Good Condition
When you move in, chances are everything’s very clean and in good repair. That’s one of the great things about moving into a new place. However, over time, things can become dirty, break, and not be in good condition. This is due to normal wear and tear.
The problem is when you turn the property back over to the landlord. At that time, everything should be in the same condition as it was when you moved in. This doesn’t mean cleaning and vacuuming just before your landlord comes.
Instead, you’ll need to do more in-depth cleaning. This means cleaning windows and window treatments, emptying and cleaning out the fridge/freezer. Emptying and wiping out drawers, cupboards, closets, and more.
If the landlord comes and finds anything not in good repair, damaged, or dirty they may need to call in a professional cleaner. In that case, the charges will be quite expensive, which will take money out of whatever deposit you may get back. In some cases, you may not receive any of the deposit back.
8). Repair Broken Fixtures & Fittings
Before you leave, make sure that all fittings and fixtures are in good repair and working. Replace bulbs that have gone bad, fill in holes and paint over them, and more.
Just be sure the repairs are within your responsibilities before making them. If not, then the landlord could even withhold your deposit for creating more damage.
9). Remove All Your Belongings
When you move out, it’s tempting not to take everything with you. For instance, that old nightstand you kept by the bed. You may no longer like it or perhaps it’s falling apart. So, why not just let the landlord deal with it?
The answer to that question should be obvious. For one thing, the landlord doesn’t want to deal with your leftover belongings. Those are your responsibility. When things are left behind, the landlord must use their time and effort to remove these from the property in preparation for the new tenants. So, say goodbye to your deposit.
When you move out, take everything with you. Even those things you no longer want. If you don’t want them, then look for a way to discard them. Maybe a charity can come by and pick up the items. Or you may need to pay a little bit to have a service remove what you no longer want. Just don’t leave these things behind when you move out.
When you leave, make sure to review the inventory checklist. Is there anything left in the property that wasn’t on the inventory list? Then get rid of it.
Getting your student accommodation deposit back can be challenging. However, by following these tips and guidelines, you’ll have a higher probability of getting the entire deposit back again!