Rental contract: focus on the end of lease inventory of fixtures
So, that’s a wrap, you’ve finished your study year and now you’re heading off for the internship of your dreams? (After a weekend in Ibiza with your mates). In any case, you have to leave your student accommodation. Before you leave, you’ll have to sign your end of lease inventory of fixtures (don't panic, it’s not that hard, we’ll explain how it works). In concrete terms for the landlord, it’s a way of checking that the accommodation is in good condition, using your moving in inventory of fixtures as a guide. Why does it matter? To get your deposit back quickly (good news for your bank balance).
What’s the purpose of the end of lease inventory of fixtures?
Whether you have chosen furnished or unfurnished accommodation, you will have signed an inventory of fixtures when you moved in (is it coming back to you yet?). During this inspection, every part of your home was examined (walls, floors, ceilings, windows, furniture, etc.) to indicate the level of wear and tear (new, worn, damaged) and any damage (hide that beer stain so it won't be seen) in writing. Ready to leave your accommodation? Be prepared to run through your end of lease inventory! The aim: to check that there has been no specific damage.
The inventory of fixtures consists of a thorough examination of the entire property in the presence of your landlord (this is the time to get out your iron for the first time). Your landlord then compares it with the initial inventory of fixtures and the differences are precisely recorded in this document. Please note that the owner has to make an appointment that works for you (it's always good to be flexible though). In the absence of an end of lease inventory of fixtures, the law considers that the tenant has returned the premises in good condition and the deposit must be returned in full.
Bear in mind that the end of lease inventory of fixtures is not a mere formality! Your deposit is at stake! That’s the sum of money you paid before you moved in, equivalent to 1 or 2 months rent. So, make sure the accommodation is spotlessly clean. Fallen out with the hoover? Ask your family or friends for help.
What happens during the end of lease inventory?
In concrete terms, on the day of the event, you meet your landlord in your home. After carefully examining all the rooms, furniture and equipment provided, you sign the inventory together. If you are in furnished accommodation, this inventory may take some time. If the initial inventory of fixtures has been properly carried out (and matches the real state of affairs), you shouldn’t have any unpleasant surprises. If you know that there has been some specific damage (that handle in your hand, for example), simply tell your landlord, it will save time and show you’re not trying to hide anything.
At the end of this inspection, you, as the tenant, hand over the keys to the property to the landlord. If nothing, in particular, has been noted, the deposit will be returned to you in full within a maximum of one month from the date of handover. If some damage has been found, the amount for the repair or replacement of the out-of-service equipment will be deducted from your security deposit. In short, you’ll pay for the damage. Of course, the owner must take into account normal wear and tear due to the occupation of the property, known as "disrepair". (There is no question of you financing the refurbishment of the property). In this case, the rest of the deposit due must be returned to you within a maximum of 2 months after the inventory of fixtures.