When managing a large number of properties, streamlining the move out process for tenants is helpful for everyone involved. When tenants aren’t clear on what is expected of them before moving out, you can run into issues in which the tenants: don’t leave on time, leave a mess, leave damage, or take things that weren’t theirs to take. If you do run into issues, you can take money from the security deposit, but neither you nor the renter wants this to happen. The move out process doesn’t have to be frustrating for you or your tenants. Properly preparing your tenants for move out may seem like a little more work upfront, but it can actually make your life easier and save time and money once the tenant actually does move out. Follow these tips to streamline the process and prepare your tenants for move out.
Create a general move out checklist that you can give to every tenant. Send this to them as soon as they let you know they will be moving out. Make sure all of their responsibilities are spelled out don’t assume they know anything. If you make this checklist very thorough, it will help your tenants be aware of everything they need to do before they move out. Consider providing more expensive cleaning materials, such as a carpet cleaner, so the tenant can complete this cleaning before they move out. Use this list to clearly communicate to them anything and everything that could affect the return of their security deposit.
Remind them to leave utilities in their name until the final day of their lease (even if they have already moved out at that point). Making sure this happens can save a major headache later.
Your tenants should be aware if there is a specific time of day they need to have vacated the property. Also make sure they know what to do with their keys when they move out.
Write down their forwarding address, phone number, and email address. This will help ensure they get their security deposit back in a timely fashion. They should forward their mail through the post office, and you also need their forwarding address to send any mail they receive after they move out.
Make the tenant aware that you may begin advertising the property before they actually move out, and that you may need to bring prospective tenants in on a walkthrough while they are still inhabiting the property. Be sure they are fully aware of this when they give you their notice of vacancy.
Schedule and complete a walk through inspection with the tenant so they aren’t surprised by anything that may be taken out of their security deposit. This also gives them a chance to explain any wear and tear or damages to you. You can note anything that still needs cleaned so they can clean it before they move out.
If you make sure your move out expectations are clear to the tenant, you can ensure a great result for everyone involved. Everything on the property will look good and clean, the post move out inspection won’t take very long, the tenant will get their security deposit back, and you will minimize the time the property sits empty between tenants. Helping your tenants move out ultimately helps you by saving both time and money.