The Inventory Checklist is a list of everything that’s provided with the property, including furniture, curtains, appliances, kitchenware and etc. It should also record the condition of everything in it, especially anything that was already damaged, marked or worn before you move in.
The landlord or the landlord’s agent should provide the Inventory Checklist. If you’re not given one, write one up yourself, and get it signed by the landlord. Please feel free to use this pdf template Protected content
Remember, the checklist should document the condition of kitchen, living areas, each bedroom, and each bathroom including the walls, doors, windows, flooring, door knobs, ceiling, light fixtures and closets. Every scratches, dents, loose door handles, and missing light fixture covers should be noted. If findings on the checklist determine items should be repaired or replaced, the landlord should note this and get it done for you.
It also helps if you take photos of the property (especially any existing damage) while you’re making the checklist. These photos can be attached to the written checklist or combined to form an electronic file. Both, you and the landlord should keep a copy for records.
On top of that, it’s always a good idea to keep records; if there’s a dispute at the end of the tenancy your records could make a big difference.
Useful items might include:
•receipts for items you have replaced
•receipts or estimates for repairs done to the property
•receipts for rent payments
•receipts for bills (especially final bills) for services at the property (for example gas, electricity, water).
It is also advisable to keep copies of any letters you send to your landlord and any replies you have received.
At the end of the tenancy you should get your deposit back within 14 days (depends on how many days it was stated on the agreement) if you and the landlord agree the amount. The landlord can’t keep your deposit because of general wear and tear. For example, if the sofa gets a bit worn out, it’s probably wear and tear, but if you burn a hole in it, it’s damage.
So, agreeing a detailed Inventory Checklist with the landlord at the start of your tenancy could help you get your security deposit back when your tenancy comes to an end.
I wrote this article, and I hope you find it useful.