When a tenancy’s coming to an end, tenants can help things go smoothly before and on the final day of the tenancy. We’ve outlined information below about showing potential tenants through the property, doing a final property inspection, and getting the bond refunded.
Showing potential tenants through the property
If the house is going to be re-rented after the tenant moves out, the property manager may want to show potential tenants through the house before the final day of the tenancy.
To do this, the property manager must have the tenant’s permission. Tenants can’t unreasonably withhold permission, but they can set reasonable conditions. For example, they may limit access to certain times of day or days of the week. This is because the tenant is entitled to quiet enjoyment of their home.
Conducting a final property inspection
The property manager and tenant should arrange a time for a final property inspection at the end of a tenancy. Most property managers will want to do a final inspection before they agree to refund the bond.
It’s best for the final inspection to take place once the tenant’s moved all their belongings out and finished cleaning the property (inside and outside).
Together, fill in a final inspection report (which is part of the tenancy agreement). Photos are useful for recording the condition of the property. Compare the final property inspection report with the initial property inspection report (from the beginning of the tenancy). This will show whether any damage has occurred during the tenancy.
Each party should sign the final report to show they agree with what it says. They should each keep a copy.
If the property manager and tenant can’t do a final inspection together, each should do their own. It’s a good idea to take photos.
Getting the bond refunded
The property manager should bring a bond refund form to the final inspection. It’s useful for the tenant to also bring one in case the property manager forgets.
A property manager and tenant should only sign a bond refund form if they agree with what’s written on it. A property manager should not ask their tenant to sign a blank form, and a tenant should not sign a blank form.
Other things for tenants to consider
Keep all of your tenancy documents in a safe place. Having your tenancy agreement, property inspection reports, rent records and letters to or from the property manager handy may help if there’s a dispute at the end.
Pay everything you need to, and cancel any services
Make sure you continue to pay the rent up to (and including) the final day of the tenancy.
If you’re required to pay for water, record the water meter reading on the final day of the tenancy (after you’ve moved everything out and have finished cleaning).
Cancel any services you have connected to the property (for example, electricity, gas or phone).
Leave the place tidy, and take only what’s yours
Remove all your belongings.
Make sure you leave the property reasonably clean and tidy (inside and outside), and take away all your rubbish.
Leave behind anything the property manager provided for you to use during the tenancy, such as furniture and appliances.
Return all the keys to the property manager.
Leave your details with the property manager
Give your forwarding address to the property manager, and to the Ministry of Business, Innovation & Employment, so mail can be forwarded to you and you can be contacted about your bond.
Ask the property manager if they’re willing to be a referee.