Moving out of a rental property… It might seem relatively straightforward because tenants do it regularly. However, without a handy checklist for renters moving out, it might not be quite as simple or straightforward as it sounds!
Indeed, when you’re moving there are so many important tasks to remember to do, and details to organise, and that’s before you can even start packing. This is where our handy renters moving out checklist will come in handy. Feel free to print it out, pop it in a prominent position, and refer to it often!
Review Your Lease Agreement
Unless you know your lease agreement backwards, you’ll probably want to check it to make sure you know what it says regarding the vacating process and things like, for example, returning the keys. It will also outline the required notice period, and all the other specific things you need to take care of before you leave.
If you’ve ticked the first item off on your checklist, you’ll know how much notice you are required to give your landlord or property manager.
Schedule Your Move-Out Date
Decide on your move-out date. It’s always a good idea to give yourself plenty of time to safely get through all the things you’ll need to do before you can actually vacate the premises. It also makes for a less stressful move!
You may need to co-ordinate this date with your landlord or property manager, particularly if they started advertising the rental when you gave notice, or have a new tenant waiting to move in.
Money Matters – Square Off Your Accounts
Make sure your rental payments are up to date, pay rent up to your moving day and make sure you don’t owe money for any services you’ll be cancelling when you move. Vendors who have to chase you for money may charge interest to recoup their costs.
Start Packing and Organising Your Move
If you’ve notified your landlord well in advance, you’ll have plenty of time to get your packing done in an orderly, stress-free way. You’ll be able to do it methodically, ticking off items on your moving out checklist as you go.
You’ll have time to label boxes correctly with their contents and destination room in their new home. There’s nothing worse than arriving at your new property and not being able to find important objects, like the kettle and your favourite coffee mug.
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Clean your rental property thoroughly – top to bottom and inside out. Consider getting in a professional cleaning company if you have to. You want as much as possible of your security deposit refunded, particularly if you’re going to need it for your new place.
Also identify any repairs needed as you go because you’ll have to attend to these in the next item on the checklist.
Make another checklist of all the things you need to pay special attention to so you don’t miss anything:
- Carpets and other floor coverings,
- The floor,
- Appliances like ceiling fans and light fittings, all of which are great dust collectors,
- Other often overlooked dust collecting places like air vents, around door frames, and under the bed in each bedroom,
- Kitchen appliances – refrigerator, stove top, oven, grill, microwave etc including cleaning all drip trays,
Repairs and Maintenance
Even the most careful tenants usually have some repairs and maintenance to do before they vacate the property. If you have a family and/or pets, you’ll be especially lucky if you make it through unscathed! So…
Make sure all appliances are working properly. If the electricity is not being turned off, check your lease to see if you need to leave any of them plugged in and switched on for the next tenant.
Fix or replace any equipment that is broken or damaged beyond what would normally be considered ‘fair wear’.
Identify any other maintenance issues that you are responsible for as part of your tenancy agreement. This will include things like
- Replacing light bulbs that don’t work,
- Removing hooks, nails, or other hangers, and fixing any holes they’ve left in the walls,
- Removing paintings, mirrors, or other items you’ve put in as a tenant,
- Cleaning and tidying up the garden and any other outdoor space,
- If you’ve painted anything a different colour, repaint it in its original colour,
- Remove temporary wallpaper you’ve put up,
- Paint over or clean scuff marks caused by furniture hitting the walls.
Update Utilities and Services
Cancel any services that weren’t part of your tenancy agreement, like the Internet or pay-TV, or arrange to have them transferred to your new address.
If you’re being billed directly for services that are not being disconnected, contact the utility and services companies to advise your date of departure from the property so they can adjust their billing accordingly. You don’t want to pay for a full billing period if you moved out half way through one.
Contact Australia Post re Your New Address
Notify Australia Post of your changed address and arrange a mail forwarding service to your new place.
Leave a Forwarding Address With Your Landlord
Leave a forwarding address and contact details with your landlord or estate agent so they can also forward your mail on.
Return Keys and Access Devices
Make sure you return all keys, access cards, and garage door openers to the landlord or property manager.
Complete Final Walkthrough
Arrange a final walkthrough of the rental with your landlord or property manager to assess the condition of the property and address any concerns.
Make sure you haven’t forgotten any of your belongings – double check cupboards, the garden, sheds, under beds…
Complete a Form 14a (exit condition report – found here at the RTA website). This is your proof of the condition of the property when you left. It’s also a good idea to take photos as well should there be any disputes later on.
If you aren’t getting your full rental bond back, ask the landlord or property manager to provide a statement of all the deductions. Ensure they refund the remaining amount of the bond as per legal requirements.
Cancel Renters’ Insurance
If you have renters’ insurance, contact your provider to either transfer it to your new place or cancel it.
Notify Other Important Parties
Arrange to change your address on documents like your driver’s licence, vehicle registration, and so on.
Log into your MyGov account HERE and update all your linked government accounts through there (ATO, Medicare, Centrelink etc).
If you’re moving to a different council area and have pets, don’t forget to update their registration details with the local council. You may also need to notify microchip databases as well if your pet is chipped.
Notify your bank, Credit Card Company, home Internet provider, and any subscription services you may have.
Save Stress and Enjoy Your Move to a New Place
Moving needs to be a stress free process so we hope our moving checklist helps you achieve this!
If you have any concerns about moving out of your rental, or would like more advice about your vacate responsibilities as a tenant in Queensland, contact us. Position One Property Managers have been helping tenants find exactly the right rental for over 20 years so we can help you find a new place to rent if necessary!