The Need for a Property Inventory
Written by Katie Starkey, Head of DOMVS Letting Agents in Dorset
In the run up to Halloween, we contemplate the need for a property inventory. They say ‘the devil is in the detail’ and this could not be more true for a tenancy. Gone are the days of thinking a handwritten note is sufficient….
What is a Property Inventory and why do we need them?
An inventory, or ‘schedule of condition’ as some like to call it, is one of the most important documents involved with letting a rental property. It features an overview of the property’s condition, along with a list of contents. In short, a comprehensive property inventory is the best way to minimise the risk of future dispute. To ensure a smooth end-of-tenancy, everything within the property should be recorded and photographed, including fixtures and fittings, such as kitchen units and work surfaces, as well as carpets and décor. Existing damage should also be recorded. Any deposit deductions at the end of a tenancy must be justified. This is why any evidence of the condition of the property at the commencement of the tenancy must be recorded and proven.
Is a Property Inventory a Legal Requirement?
Some Landlords believe that if a property is let unfurnished, then an inventory is unnecessary. This is simply not the case. Whilst there is currently no legal requirement to have a property inventory, neglecting to have one, or having a badly created inventory could be very costly to a Landlord. All DOMVS Landlords are strongly advised to have a professional inventory carried out, which we arrange through a specialist inventory company. This ensures both the landlord and tenant are treated fairly from the outset. This is also an unbiased report, which should protect both parties from any potential problems at the end of the tenancy.
Don’t let the lack of detail at the beginning of the tenancy cause you problems at the end.