Published: September 13, 2016
One of the shining lights of moving out of an apartment is the prospect of getting your security deposit back. Security deposits are often equal to your first month’s rent (read: a pretty good chunk of change), so you’ll want to do everything you can to get it all back at the end of your lease.
Follow our tips for how to get your full security deposit back:
Do a Thorough Move-In Inspection
Many people overlook the move-in inspection and think of it as an unimportant chore unless there’s something drastic that needs to be fixed. However, this is a sure fire way to ensure that any damage done to the apartment before you moved in was not your responsibility. Be thorough; look for holes in walls, broken tiles, carpet stains, broken windows, bent blinds, etc. Take photos and be very diligent and keep a copy of your inspection in a safe place so you have it ready when you move out.
Read The Fine Print
When it comes to getting your security deposit back, many leases include a number of tasks that you, as the tenant, are responsible for when you move out. Did you paint when your lease said not to? Were you required to get the carpet cleaned before you move out? These are all things that are spelled out in the lease that can be easy fixes before you move out.
Get Into the Nooks & Crannies
When cleaning, many people think that the basics—vacuuming carpet, mopping the kitchen floor, cleaning the toilet, filling in holes in the wall—are all it takes to get your deposit back, so they’re surprised when they get charged for things they didn’t even think to clean. Things like:
Wiping down the grime that builds up on window blinds and ceiling fans
Forgetting to wash the baseboards and inside the crevices on doors
Not scrubbing inside the oven (pro tip: use a professional-grade oven cleaner).
Not cleaning inside cabinets or inside the refrigerator
Removing the grime and buildup from lights witches, outlets, and door handles
Vacuuming the dust from exhaust fans
If you have a yard be sure to mow the lawn before you go
If you’ve made any big damage or if your place is just too big to clean (and you have it in your budget), consider hiring professionals to clean and repair your place before you go (many cleaning companies have “move-out cleaning” as a service that they offer).
Need a place to store your stuff while you’re cleaning and moving out? Contact UNITS to see how we can help!