The day has come for your new tenant to move in. Do you have a Landlord Move In Checklist?
Whether you are a new or existing landlord it is always good to come prepared. A move in day checklist will help you make the move in day a successful one and also keep you fully complaint with the law.
I have created my own landlord move in day checklist for you below. This is based on my years of experience with single let and HMO property investments.
A lot of people think that being a landlord is easy. All you have to do is get your property ready and hand your tenant the keys right? Unfortunately not, there are a lot of things that you need to consider as a landlord and this post will help you.
If you already have a “landlord moving day checklist” then that’s fine. I encourage you to compare it to mine to see if there is anything that you missed. It is worth adding things that you may have overlooked when you compiled your checklist. I have updated my checklist a few times to get it where it is today.
Landlord Move In Checklist
Before we get into the detail of the landlord moving day checklist I want to make it clear that some of the items are required by law and therefore mandatory for you to check. All of the others are useful and they have worked well for me so I am confident that they will work well for you too.
I have to tell you that I have compared my landlord moving day checklist with others available online and mine is a lot more comprehensive. At the end of the day it is up to you whether you use my checklist or not, but I just want to underline that I have gone into this in great detail.
OK here is my landlord moving in checklist which tackles the mandatory checks you must make to stay within the law first.
The how to Rent Guide
To comply with the law you must provide the government’s “How to Rent Guide” to your tenants in England. You can download a PDF version of the latest guide at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/how-to-rent
Electrical Installation Condition Report
In England, it is a legal requirement that you provide a copy of your latest EICR (electrical installation condition report). It is good practice to show your tenant this copy prior to them moving in.
Gas Safety Certificate
For any rental property in the UK you need to provide your tenant with a copy of your Gas Safety Certificate (CP12). Again it is good practice to show a copy of your CP12 prior to the tenant moving in.
Energy Performance Certificate
For any rental property in the UK you need to provide your tenant with a copy of your Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). Again it is good practice to show a copy of your EPC prior to the tenant moving in.
Testing of Smoke Alarms
This is only a legal requirement for landlords in England but if you are elsewhere in the UK then you should do this anyway. You need to ensure:
- Each storey of your rental property used for living accommodation must have a smoke alarm installed
- If any of your living accommodation rooms have a solid fuel appliance then you must have a carbon monoxide alarm installed
- You need to test all of the installed alarms on move in day
The rest of my landlord move in checklist are not legally required but are good practices to adopt.
Usually you will have provided your tenant with a tenancy agreement contract to sign prior to them moving in. But just in case you haven’t done this yet, move in day is your last chance.
If you require a deposit from your tenant then you should arrange this prior to move in. It is OK for the tenant to provide the deposit on move in day – just check that you have received it.
Rent for the First Month
You can arrange with your tenant for the first month’s rent to be received on move in day. Whatever arrangement you have with your tenant for paying the rent in advance, you need to check that you have received this money on move in day.
If your tenant has a guarantor for the payment of their rent then there needs to be a signed agreement between you and the guarantor. You should have this ready prior to move in day but don’t leave it any later.
Be sure to have a set of keys that you can hand to your tenant on move in day. Test them to make sure that they all work first.
Unfurnished Property needs to be Empty
If you are renting your property unfurnished then you need to check that it is totally empty on move in day. Yes you need to provide essential items, but do not leave anything else as you will be responsible for these by default.
It is a good idea to conduct your inventory of the property before move in day. Take your camera with you and take photographs. When it is time for your tenant to move in, give them a copy of your inventory which includes any important things that you have noted. Take them around the property clearly pointing out any specific notes that you made.
You may find something on move in day that you missed with your initial inventory. If this is the case then take photographs and add it to your inventory report. Provide a copy of the final inventory report to your tenant and then get them to sign and date it as well as yourself confirming it as an accurate inventory.
Provide your tenant with a list of important information on move in day. Examples of what to include on here are:
- Your contact details and any other important contact details
- The existing suppliers of utilities
- Any codes for alarm systems
Show them how things work
This is highly recommended. Although a lot of things will be obvious and will not require you to demonstrate how they work, there are likely to be other items such as central heating and boiler settings that you should explain.
Having the instruction manuals for any item is always a good thing. Put these in one place and show your tenant where they are.
Utility Shut Off
It is important that you show your tenant where they can shut off utilities. Here are the important ones:
- Electric shut off point at the switchbox
- The stopcock valve to turn off the water supply
- The gas isolation valve
Reading the Meters
You and your tenant should check the current meter readings for utilities so that payments for these are clear. Take photographs of these readings and supply a copy to your tenant. Make sure that the photographs include accurate date and time stamps.
These last two landlord move in checklist items are for you to action.
Notifications to Utility Services
Make sure that you notify any utility providers about your new tenant(s) and supply them with the meter readings that you took (if appropriate). These should include:
- Electric suppliers
- Gas suppliers
- Water suppliers
- Telecommunications suppliers (phone and Internet)
- The council for council tax purposes
Notifying any insurance providers of a new tenant(s) such as rent guarantee insurers, property contents insurers and building insurers should take place prior to your tenant moving in. If you have not done this then do it on move in day. Failure to do this could make your policies invalid and any claims rejected by the insurance companies.
While my landlord move in checklist is fairly long, I would highly recommend that you check everything here. It will not take you too long to do this and will help to prevent any problems down the road.