Moving into a new Brookline rental house can be an exciting time. But it is actually also the ideal time to do one of the most important things you can do to protect your security deposit: a pre-move-in walkthrough inspection. Even though some landlords will provide you with a list of things to verify about your rental home before you move in, others may not. Even if they don’t require it, you should still perform a walkthrough inspection on your own. Just in case you wish to make use of your pre-move-in walkthrough, it’s necessary to keep a few key practices in mind.
Nothing can ever take the place of an in-person walkthrough. A kind and helpful landlord may say that they have inspected the property for you, but you still need to check everything yourself. While indeed most landlords aren’t deliberately trying to trick you, you still may uncover maintenance or other issues that got left out of the report. If you fail to check each part of your rental property carefully, you can wind up paying for repairing something that was broken before you moved in.
Use a Checklist
Making the best use of your pre-move-in walkthrough implies inspecting each part of your rental home carefully. To make certain that you haven’t forgotten anything, use a checklist. Some landlords will provide a checklist for you; others may not. If yours doesn’t, there are plenty of checklists and guides you should download online. Using a checklist is vital for the reason that it will actually keep your walkthrough targeted and see to it that you don’t ever miss anything. Plus, you can use your checklist for comparison after you move out.
A checklist is an important first step in documenting your walkthrough. Although maximizing your pre-move-in inspection suggests going beyond just checking off elements. To fully protect your security deposit from undeserved repair charges, you need to carefully and thoroughly document each aspect of the property’s condition before you move in. Create a lot of notes, either on the checklist itself or on a separate page. It can help you later on if you take down notes of condition issues, locations, and so on, no matter how small.
Indeed, most landlords won’t try to charge you to replace an entire kitchen floor for one damaged spot in the linoleum, but some might. One other best idea is to take pictures of the property as you inspect it. Be certain to take a lot of different close-up and wider shots, and to keep your photos in a safe place.
Report Maintenance Issues
As soon as you’ve executed your walkthrough and documentation, make sure to report any maintenance issues you discovered swiftly. Broken toilet seats or blinds, leaky faucets, and non-functioning light switches or outlets may seem like no big deal, but if things are broken or not working before you move in, you need to tell your landlord about them immediately. If possible, send your landlord something in writing to ensure that you have proof of the mentioned concerns. This will not only protect you from unjust accusations but will also protect your security deposit in case you move out.
Optimizing your pre-move-in walkthrough does take a little bit extra action. But it’s worth it. Nothing can secure you to get all of your security deposit back like doing whatsoever you can to document your rental home’s pre-move-in condition thoroughly.
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