A tenant has decided to move out or has been told by the property owner to vacate. Now, the property needs to be inspected, keys collected and the security deposit returned, as well as a bunch of other tasks that need to be completed.
This checklist will ensure that you are completing each necessary step in the tenant move-out process and updating Buildium accordingly to maintain data integrity.
Record basic details
Confirm move-out date
Select the move-out date that you have confirmed with the tenant.
Update property page in Buildium
Once the move-out date has been confirmed between you and the tenant, it's time to conduct a walk-through inspection of the property to document any damage as well as cleaning and general maintenance needs.
This is also an essential step in evaluating what portion (if not all) of the security deposit will be paid back to the tenant once they have vacated the property.
As you perform the inspection, keep in mind that some things need to be checked in every room, while others are unique to specific rooms. For example, you will obviously only need to inspect a stove in the kitchen, whereas flooring, walls, doors, locks, and windows will need to be inspected in all rooms.
A simple guide to move-out inspections for landlords
Contact the tenant to schedule an inspection date for you to evaluate the overall condition of the property.
You can create and send an email template from Buildium as an alternative to using the template provided below.
Confirm inspection date
When the tenant has replied to your email, confirming a date for you to perform a walk-through inspection, enter it below.
Gather documents from move-in inspection
Select the date of the move-in inspection conducted when the previous tenant moved out along with any documents/photographs that you can refer to when evaluating the current state of the property.
Determine method/tool used for inspection
Perform the inspection using your tool
Carefully inspect each functional element of the kitchen. Complete the sub-checklist below and document your notes in writing and photographs.
The sink: Turn the faucet on and check for water pressure and drainage. Inspect under the sink cabinet looking out for leaks, mold or water damage. Also, check the water valves for corrosion or leakage.
Countertops: Inspect for any significant chips, cracks or gauges.
Cabinet and drawer storage: Check that all cabinet doors are functioning properly. Note if any hinges or hardware are missing.
The stove: Check each burner to ensure they are clean and working correctly
The oven: Check that the oven is clean.
The refrigerator: Check that the refrigerator is clean and functioning properly.
The dishwasher: Check for mold inside the wall frame. This would indicate if the seals and hoses connecting the dishwasher to the water source are damaged.
Cabinets and drawer storage
Inspect living area
Document the conditions of:
Go through each bedroom and note the condition of:
Carpets (if any)
Bathrooms often have hidden damage, so be sure to:
Check around the toilet for leaks
Check for broken tiles
Check the sink and drainage
Check the faucet
Check the showerhead
Check condition of the mirror
Check the walls and ceiling
Add inspection details to property page in Buildium
Be sure to add inspection documentation and notes to the property page in Buildium.
"One of the tricks of the tenant trade is to “forget” to leave a forwarding address to a landlord upon checking out of a property."
Don't get tricked!
Make sure the tenant provides you with a forwarding address so you can return their deposit and forward their mail.
If you are dealing with a troublesome tenant, not having a forwarding address is a problem as they may leave the property in such poor condition that their security deposit cannot cover the issue and you need to file a lawsuit against them.
Collect the keys
The day has come for the tenant to vacate the property. Be very clear about where you would like them to leave/drop-off the keys. This should be stated in the lease agreement, along with a description of the penalty if they fail to return the keys within a certain timeframe.