ARLA urges tenants to catalogue wear and tear

Tenants are remaining in the same properties for longer, increasing from an average period of 16.5 months in 2009 to 19.4 months in 2013.

Susan Fitz-Gibbon, president of ARLA, said: “A detailed and accurate inventory can often make moving out of a rental property a far smoother process.

“As tenants stay in their rented homes for longer it’s even more important to have accurate information on the state of the property from when you first moved in, as there may be greater wear and tear. This means recording the condition of the property with written notes as well as details of the contents, including fixtures and fittings; tenants sometimes choose to take accompanying photos too, which can also help.

In a step by step guide, ARLA said tenants should take photographic evidence of a property’s condition when moving in, adding that copies should be shared with the landlord.

Secondly tenants should keep a written description on the state of items, to be signed by a landlord.

If in doubt ARLA said to use a member of the Association of Professional Inventory Providers, who are professionally trained in drawing up an inventory and conducting the check in and check out.