Dirty properties a growing problem for agents and landlords

Dirty properties a growing problem for agents and landlords

Since the introduction of tenant deposit protection in 2007, cleaning has been the number-one cause of disputes and the problem is getting worse, according to Imfuna Let.

The latest data from the Tenant Deposit Scheme shows that cleaning continues to take the lion’s share of deposit disputes, up almost 50% over the last five years. Cleaning has consistently been the most common dispute in cases brought to the TDS and arises in around half of the cases they deal with (58%).  

According to Imfuna, agents and landlords are increasingly facing filthy properties at the end of tenancies.

The biggest problems that agents and landlords face include dirty ovens and fridges; stains and marks on carpeting and flooring; bathrooms which have not been cleaned for months; and pet hair and excrement on floors, furniture and soft furnishings.


Jax Kneppers, founder and CEO, said: “Many tenants claim their landlord or agent failed to make it clear that the property should be left clean at check-out. It is essential that landlords and agents conduct a thorough inventory, with photography and detailed descriptions on the condition of the property at the start of the tenancy. This ‘proof of condition’ should be shared with the tenant when they are issued with the tenancy agreement.  

“At the check-out stage, the tenant should be made aware of the areas requiring cleaning and the potential cost involved. It is important to remember that the tenant is only obliged to return the property in the same state of cleanliness as at the start of the tenancy, after allowing for fair wear and tear."

Howard Lester, Director of Balgores Property Group, commented: “We have seen a sharp rise in the number of properties that require professional cleaning services at check-out over the last 12 months. There is a definitely a lack of respect for property amongst tenants and it appears that they are happy to live in dirty accommodation. Many tenants fail to leave their property in the same condition when they leave a property and we have seen many properties in a filthy state at the end of the tenancy.

“At a recent check-out, the property was left in a disgusting state. The tenants had not cleaned the oven for months and it was caked with grease and spills on the hob and on the inside.  Bags of rubbish were left in the kitchen and the worktops were filthy with grime. The carpets were heavily marked with pet excrement and numerous spills.  The garden was left with an old washing machine, rusty bikes and worn-out tyres. It cost the landlord several hundred pounds to have the property professionally cleaned.

“Tenants are often shocked to realise that professional cleaning can be costly, depending on the area and type of work required. Some tenants think cleaning issues are just normal wear and tear.”

Join our mailing list:

Leave a comment



Latest Comments

Tony Gimple
Tony Gimple 09 Dec 2017

Linking professionalism to limited company borrowing is a flawed concept. Despite S24 etc., limited companies are the most tax inefficient way of running a property business and leave borrowers seriously...

view article
Evelyn Attwood
Evelyn Attwood 01 Dec 2017

It's normal. If you plan to buy a house in one of the most beautiful spots in the country you should pay a high price.

view article
Evelyn Attwood
Evelyn Attwood 01 Dec 2017

I think that the situation will be the same at December.

view article
Scott Garnet
Scott Garnet 06 Nov 2017

If you have a patio or a porch it is important to make sure that any connecting doors are secured. Good advice for sliding glass doors is replacing the panels with storm resistant glass and getting heavier...

view article
richardrawlings
richardrawlings 01 Nov 2017

What has not been mentioned here is the effect of not only higher interest payments, but also that these payments are less likely to be offsettable as a business cost due to the scaling back of mortgage...

view article
Kelvin Lloyd
Kelvin Lloyd 09 Oct 2017

IT is up, to the Planners. If they will only give permission for bungalows on certain (suitable) sites, they will be built.

view article
maggie swift
maggie swift 09 Oct 2017

It's just the beginning of the shocking rise.

view article
maggie swift
maggie swift 09 Oct 2017

I have recently read that the bungalows can provide social housing for elderly residents in London.

view article
zoe glover
zoe glover 05 Oct 2017

Update! Worst company I have ever dealt with. Undervalued a Cambridge property by over 100k, wont take on any evidence of valuation including a RICS valuation done 3 years ago for the very same value...

view article
Paul Edwards
Paul Edwards 27 Sep 2017

Its nonsense articles such as this that make it harder to get clients to realise just how difficult the market is out there. When you see Rightmove and there are more 'price reduced' then 'new' most days...

view article
Tom Allen
Tom Allen 20 Sep 2017

Absolutely agree with you!

view article
RyanGeo
RyanGeo 18 Sep 2017

A sharp correction would be a less dramatic expression to use. That is already underway in certain sectors in Reading where I practice as Chartered Surveyor

view article

Related stories

More articles from Landlords