Most letting agents are already carrying out inspections for check-in and check-out reports (hopefully). Some are going further and conducting interim inspections. But how many are going the extra mile to carry out pre-check-out inspections and reports – and is it worth their time and effort to do so?
The team at Inventory Hive have been carrying out research amongst their users and discovered that the most wanted type of report requested by agents was, in fact, for pre-check-out inspections.
What is a pre-check-out report?
A pre-check-out report, as the name indicates, is an inspection (and subsequent report) that happens before the final check-out on moving day. It’s typically carried out a month prior to the end of tenancy.
There are a few good reasons why demand for these pre-check-out reports is so high amongst landlords and agents. Here are three of the most important:
Three reasons why pre-check-out reports are beneficial:
- They reduce deposit disputes
A look at the latest report from the Tenancy Dispute Scheme shows that the top reasons for disputes are cleaning, damage and redecoration. Many of these issues require a certain timeframe to rectify. By conducting an inspection before the end of tenancy, both tenants and agents can action the problem areas in good time. The pre-check-out visit also allows the agent or landlord to highlight areas of concern or poor cleanliness to the tenant ahead of moving day. It may simply be that the tenant isn’t aware of what should be cleaned and to what standard. This visit can help the tenants to see what needs to be done to secure their full deposit when they leave.
- They reduce tenancy delays
Much like the first point, the pre-check-out inspection means that everyone has the time to remedy problems before the last day of tenancy. This not only speeds the process up for agents and landlords who will be keen to get new tenants into the property as soon as possible (and prevent loss of rental) – it also speeds up the deposit return for tenants. It’s a win-win for all concerned. Delays can arise when tradesman, cleaners and decorators are required to return the property to its orginal condition. By allowing time to schedule these appointments in advance, delays are reduced down the line.
- They boost relationships, reviews and reputation
End of tenancy disputes often occur because expectations weren’t clear or because of discrepancies between the ‘before and after’ condition of the property. At this point, it is not uncommon for relationships to break down completely, especially when claims are made. This inevitably snowballs into poor agent reviews and reputation. The pre-check-out inspections give agents and tenants the opportunity to communicate about potential issues, to discuss the actions required, and to keep lines of contact open. Leaving all of that until moving day adds to the difficulty of an already stressful experience where emotions may be running high. It’s always better to tackle the problems ahead of final check-out, to maintain good relations.
The answer to whether pre-check-out reports are worth the extra effort is clear. They ultimately save time, money and reputation. And, with the help of the Inventory Hive app, the in-built reporting templates, camera, cloud-based inventory records and automated communications included, makes the visit and extra reporting process even easier. Inventory Hive users can now create unlimited reports, including customisable reports such as pre-check out reports.
It’s a no brainer, really.
Learn more at Inventory Hive.
* Richard Abbots is the CEO and Founder at Inventory Hive