Nearing the end of your lease? It could be worth contacting a cleaning service earlier than you planned to.
Across the UK, around 29% of tenants lose part or all of their deposits every year, with average losses of £825 per renter. Collectively, lose deposits amount to over £1 billion per year — a very large sum, even in the context of the property rental market.
The figures are even worse for students and young renters, with four in 10 university students failing to receive their deposits. On average, UK students lose £164 to landlords, primarily due to cleanliness issues.
There are several reasons for landlords to keep rental deposits. Often, lost or damaged home inventory, including small items that tenants fail to account for, can be a reason for landlords to keep some or all of a tenant’s deposit.
Other reasons include unpaid rent and property damage. However, by far the largest cause of deposit disputes is cleanliness. From dirty floors to bathroom mildew and other nasty cleaning issues, cleanliness remains the biggest reason for unreturned deposits.
In fact, a total of nine out of every 10 letting agents claim that cleaning issues are the biggest reason deposits go unreturned. Tenants, agents explain, often expect a professional level of cleanliness that doesn’t match the expectations of their tenants.
Because of this, it’s important to take end of tenancy cleaning seriously. Often, even a small level of cleanliness issues (including cleaning problems you might not consider serious) could be enough to put your deposit in jeopardy.
End of tenancy cleaning services allow you to clean your property to a professional standard — the level that’s often expected from landlords. Instead of simply cleaning for comfort, an end of tenancy cleaner will look at your home with a landlord’s eye and clean to an optimal standard.
This means cleaning in “hidden” areas that often go unnoticed, such as removing grime from a kitchen extractor and cleaning the inside of an oven to remove built-up grease. It can also mean de-scaling shower screens, dusting light fittings and vacuuming upholstered furniture.
In short, end of tenancy cleaning means cleaning to a standard that many renters aren’t used to, all with the aim of maximising your likelihood of receiving your deposit back in full.
How much can end of tenancy cleaning save you, as a tenant? The exact answer depends on a variety of factors, the biggest of which is the size of your property. Larger properties usually cost more to clean than smaller ones, affecting your potential savings.
However, it’s almost always cheaper to buy end of tenancy cleaning as a tenant than it is to let your landlord cover your unit’s cleaning costs. Landlords frequently quote overly high prices for end of tenancy cleaning, creating hundreds of pounds in extra costs for tenants.
There’s also the risk of losing your deposit entirely — a significant one in the event that you leave the property in an uncleaned state at the end of your lease. This mean that, for most renters, an end of tenancy cleaning service can usually save you several hundred pounds.