Renting? Avoid Losing your Deposit

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Renting? Avoid Losing your Deposit


Renting? Avoid Losing your Deposit Image

When renting any property, whether residential or commercial, the vast majority of the time you will be required to put up a deposit in order to guarantee against damage or unpaid rent. The exact amount will vary, but the process is generally the same each time: the deposit will be returned at the end of the tenancy, minus any amount used to cover damage and cleaning not already done.

Despite new laws introduced in 2007 to help protect renters and their deposits in the form of the Tenancy Deposit Protection Scheme (TDP), landlords still retain certain rights when it comes to withholding part or all of a deposit from a tenant.       

So if you’re moving house from a rented property, be sure to take some time to avoid losing your deposit.

Common Reasons for Losing a Deposit

Items Left Behind

Often, many tenants feel inclined to leave behind larger items, such as furniture, that they don’t feel like they can move. Any belongings that don’t appear on the initial inventory that is signed when moving into the property will often be removed by the landlord, who will pass on the cost to the tenant.

Professional removal companies, such as Chappell’s Removals, will provide full packing and moving services, ensuring that all items are removed from the home whatever their size and shape.  



Cleaning, or lack of it, is very often the main reason for tenants losing part of their deposit when vacating a property. Most landlords will expect their homes to be left in a “habitable state”, which is a fairly subjective description, so it is best not to risk it and spend a couple of hours giving it a good going over.

Start by taking all nails, blue tack and other fixings off the walls, and repairing any damage they may have done to the wallpaper. Clean out all cupboards, wardrobes and fridge/freezers, giving them a thorough scrub, and fully clean and disinfect all surfaces.

Spend some time shining up sinks and taps (this makes a huge difference visually), and fully sanitise showers and toilets.

Cut any grass on the property and remove litter from outside areas.

Lastly, sweep/vacuum all floors, and mop those that aren’t carpeted.


Determining what constitutes damage and what is simply wear and tear can be difficult. The latter is the responsibility of the landlord, while the former is classed as the fault of the tenant, and repayment will be claimed from the deposit. General wear on carpets, curtains, white goods and bathroom facilities should not see any money being taken from the deposit for upkeep, while avoidable and irreparable damage, such as cigarette burns or broken fixtures and fittings, could see a deduction of some form.


Other Considerations

As well as leaving unwanted belongings behind, if there are items that are noted in the inventory that are not present at the time of moving out, you could be liable for them, and compensation may be taken from your deposit.

Missing rent or invalidating the tenancy in some way before it ends could see a reduction in the deposit, although there are many legal variables to this that may be determined by the tenancy agreement or contract.


Chappell's Removals provide first-rate removals and storage services across South West London, Surrey and beyond. Whether you’re moving from a rented home or office, our friendly and professional team are on hand to carry out all packing pre-move, before transporting your belongings to their new location in a safe and efficient manner. For more information, or to request a quote for your domestic or commercial move, get in touch with Chappell’s Removals today.

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