Hiring a Pre-Tenancy Cleaner

Introduction Hiring a pre-tenancy cleaner may not be something that you have considered before. However, if you are a landlord,…

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Introduction

Hiring a pre-tenancy cleaner may not be something that you have considered before. However, if you are a landlord, a current tenant, or simply moving into a new property, there may be benefits to hiring a pre-tenancy cleaner that you should think about.  

Contents

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Flats and houses become unclean and unhygienic over time, even if they have not been lived in for very long. Regular cleaning is essential, yet many tenants just don’t carry this out to a high standard. Some just plain neglect this, not hoovering, dusting or disinfecting during their tenancy. Hosting parties, gatherings and just being in your home can lead to wear and tear of your accommodation, such as marks on the walls and dirt on the carpets.

Even if a property is left visibly clean, you should consider hiring a pre-tenancy cleaner to ensure the levels of cleanliness and hygiene are safe for new tenants. Not only is this really important during this pandemic but in addition to this, it is simply nicer to move into a clean and tidy property rather than a dirty and neglected one. 

After the property has received it’s pre-tenancy clean, it should show no trace of the previous tenants. If you are a landlord hiring a pre-tenancy cleaner, it will demonstrate to your new tenants that you value them and that you take care of your properties. This can only be a good thing for your professional reputation.

You might be wondering how you can guarantee to hire the right professional cleaning company, that will ensure that your property is left sparkling and polished, with every area cleaned and sanitised. This guide will explain all you need to know about hiring a pre-tenancy cleaner and what you should be looking for, as well as the do’s and don’ts.

What is a pre-tenancy clean?

A pre-tenancy clean, also known as an end of tenancy clean, is a deep and thorough clean of a property. This deep clean can be arranged by the current tenants, new tenants or landlord. As a current tenant or landlord, you can clean the property yourself. Not only can this be time consuming, but it is often less effective than hiring a pre-tenancy cleaner. It can be difficult for you to ensure it will be completely pristine and immaculate if this is not done by professionals.  Hiring a pre-tenancy cleaner will ensure that a ‘top-to-bottom’ clean is performed, leaving you with a gleaming, hygienic and presentable property. As a tenant, whilst there may be a cost to hiring a pre tenancy cleaner, this is likely to be less than any deposit you may lose due to poor cleanliness, such as a dirty oven or dirty carpets if a pre-tenancy clean is carried out in preparation for the next tenants. 

Why do you need to hire a pre-tenancy cleaner?

As a landlord or agency, you do have a duty of care to your tenants. You must make sure that health and safety rules are met before allowing new tenants into a property, hiring a pre-tenancy cleaner will help you to guarantee you meet those requirements. One of the areas that needs special consideration is ensuring the properly is free from mould and mildew. 

This can be a particular problem for rooms such as bathrooms and kitchens where tenants may not have ensured adequate ventilation was available. Knowing exactly which cleaning products to use to rid your properties of this nuisance and reduce the likelihood of it returning is a real benefit of hiring a pre-tenancy cleaner. The professional cleaners will know exactly the products to use and will effectively remove any mould and mildew ensuring a hygienic environment for the new tenants moving into your property.  

man in gray hoodie and blue denim jeans standing on brown wooden parquet flooring

As well as ensuring that the property is hygienically prepared for any new tenants, presenting a clean and spotless looking property ensures it makes a good first impression when prospective tenants view it.  Being clean makes it much more appealing during viewings and will really help potential tenants be able to envision themselves living there.  

Hiring a pre tenancy cleaner will help to rid the property of some of the ‘wear and tear’ that is left behind when tenants vacate a property. Whether that is marks on the walls, dirty bathrooms or grease in the kitchen. Not ridding your property of these signs of wear and tear can be very off putting for any potential new tenants as they will be focusing on these, rather than the reasons why they should consider renting your property. This is why it is vital the property is clean for viewings. 

As the rental market becomes more competitive, this cleanliness becomes even more important. In rental markets such as London, having a gleaming property may lead to potential tenants offering to pay more than was initially being asked for in rent so ensure they are able to secure the tenancy.

Some tenancy agreements, such as student lets, require you to hire a pre-tenancy cleaner when your tenancy comes to an end. Whilst this may have a cost implication hiring a professional and thorough cleaning company will ensure the property is left hygienic and presentable for the next tenants. 

This is also important as some agencies and landlords have different rules on the level of cleanliness required for the property, once it has been vacated but by hiring a pre tenancy cleaner, you will ensure the cleaning is carried out to the correct standards. For instance, some need the carpet, window and oven cleaning but some cleaners charge extra for this or do not provide those services at all. If those requirements are not met, it could leave you with a hefty charge at the end of your tenancy or affect you receiving your full deposit back as the landlord will have to arrange it themselves.

As a tenant, working together with your landlord or rental agency is a great way to ensure the landlord or agency’s needs are met and that the property is cleaned to the expected standard.  It can be a great idea to ask them for a list of cleaning requirements. When you are then looking at hiring a pre-tenancy cleaner you can discuss these requirements with the various cleaning companies to ask if they provide this and what the costs for these services will be. This information about cleaning the property at the end of the tenancy would usually be found within your tenancy agreement along with any other important information regarding the condition the property should be left in. If you are unable to find this information, then contact your landlord or rental agency and talk to them to ensure you know what is expected and how the property should be left. 

If you don’t want to find a cleaning company yourself then you could ask the landlord or agency for a recommendation of cleaning companies, they use, or other clients use. This way you are much more likely to ensure the end of tenancy cleaning company you hire are meet the expectations of the landlord. It may also be possible to hire an end of tenancy cleaner through the landlord or rental agency. There may be a small additional cost to this but doing this will save you time and it then becomes the landlord or rental agency’s responsibility to follow this up and ensure the cleaning is carried out to the required standard. 

As a tenant remember to seriously consider hiring an end of tenancy cleaner as you reach the end of your tenancy.  By choosing not to have the property deep cleaned you may be choosing to short-change yourself as you may not receive your full deposit back. It is always worth paying that little bit extra for a professional cleaning service as it may well save you money in the long run. If the property requires a clean after you have moved out it is highly likely that you will be charged for this service and you may even incur additional charges for damage or neglect.

Can I just clean the property myself?

The simple answer is yes, you can clean the property yourself. However, as well as being extremely time consuming can you honestly guarantee you that the work has been carried out to a high enough standard and that the products used are of an appropriate quality?  Hiring a pre-tenancy cleaner will make sure that the property is cleaned with industry grade products and equipment, leaving nothing untouched. Professional cleaners have expert knowledge which they use to ensure that specific areas in the home are cleaned, descaled, sanitised and disinfected to perfection. After a pre-tenancy clean, the property will be immaculate and pristine for future tenants.

What does a pre-tenancy clean include?

As a pre-tenancy clean is the most thorough clean possible for a property, so it really does include everything. From cleaning inside drawers and cupboards, to doorframes, refrigerators, furniture and skirting boards. When hiring a pre-tenancy cleaner, nothing is ignored or forgotten about. These cleaners are highly trained professionals who are educated on what is looked for by landlords. So, if you are ending your tenancy and want your full deposit back, it is highly recommended you opt for an end of tenancy clean.

Here is a list of what should be included in most pre-tenancy cleans:

  • Door frames, handles and doors
  • Light switches, sockets and shades
  • Skirting boards
  • Dust and cobweb removal
  • Underneath remaining furniture such as beds and sofas
  • Windowsills, internal windows, and window frames
  • Polishing all wooden furniture such as bookshelves, tables, wardrobes etc.
  • Vacuuming the whole property
  • Cleaning and disinfecting kitchen cupboards
  • All kitchen appliances thoroughly cleaned including hob, oven, refrigerator, freezer and microwave
  • All taps, tiles, toilets and basins descaled and polished

What is not included in a pre-tenancy clean?

The answer to this question is completely subjective and will change depending on which cleaning company you decide to hire, so it is important to ask them yourselves. However, there are some common areas that are not included in a pre-tenancy clean.

Carpets are most commonly not included; this is because the cleaning process is very time consuming and requires carpet cleaning equipment that not all pre-tenancy cleaners own. If you require carpet cleaning, you can either hire the equipment yourself or pay a professional carpet cleaner to do it for you. Similarly, garages and patios are not often included because of the cleaning equipment required.

Some tenancy agreements require the outside windows to be thoroughly cleaned but these usually are not included in pre-tenancy cleans due to time management and skill. To make sure the job gets done correctly, it is important that you hire a professional window cleaner.

Finally, anything that is easily damaged or fragile, such as lightbulbs, are not usually included. This is because they are usually not too dirty anyway and they are too delicate which creates a risk for the cleaner as they could potentially break.

How much will it cost?

The cost of hiring a pre-tenancy cleaner depends on the company itself and the location you live in. Some cleans cost as little as £95 for a one-bedroom flat but others start at £240. For a larger home, such as a six bedroom property, you would be looking at spending between £230 and £415. However, dividing that between six people is a small price to pay to possibly receive a full deposit back.

It is recommended that you research several local professional cleaning companies and ask them for a quote. The number of bedrooms, bathrooms and individual furniture, cupboards and light fittings will affect the cost of the pre-tenancy clean. The state of the property will also be a major factor, if it has been correctly maintained and cleaned throughout the previous tenancy, the clean will take less time and effort, therefore costing less.

If the property is left full of rubbish, dust, dirt, and mould then the pre-tenancy clean will take a lot longer to perform so there may be some additional cost considerations. Some tenants may leave a property in disarray with no concern about how disrespectful this is to the landlord or whether they lose their deposit or not, potentially affecting the rental value of the property. Hiring an end of tenancy cleaner will help to restore not only cleanliness and hygiene to the property but will help to reinstate the rental value of your property. 

Cost may be influenced by other factors such as the cleaning company’s reputation and the cleaning products used. If a company is used to working on more expensive, high-profile properties then they may charge a higher rate.  If you are a landlord that requires your properties to be cleaned with eco-friendly products or a particular brand of product then you could expect the cost the the pre-tenancy clean to be increased. 

As a landlord gaining a good local reputation can take years. Providing clean and hygienic properties that your tenants look forward to moving into can really help promote your properties in an ever increasing competitive market 

How long does a pre-tenancy clean take?

Once again, this question is entirely relative. The size and condition of the property will have a huge impact on the time it takes to perform a pre-tenancy clean. Unless you live in a mansion, it is recommended that you dedicate one whole day for the clean to take place. If you live in a small property, such as a one or two-bedroom flat, it may just take a couple of hours. Alternatively, a house with five bedrooms or more will mostly take all day to clean. It is a necessary use of time so find something to do with your day but stay local so that the cleaners can return the keys at some point.

What do you need to do before your pre-tenancy clean?

One of the most important things to consider when hiring a pre-tenancy cleaner is the timing of the clean, regardless of whether you are the landlord or the tenant. The most sensible thing to do to enable the best quality clean when the house is changing tenant is to book the clean for when the property is actually vacated.  You need to consider whether there is any point in hiring a cleaner if there are still belongings in the property and if the cleaners will need to try to work their way around packing boxes. It may be that you decide to be there on the day of the clean or leave a key with a neighbour.

If you are a tenant this may mean that you need to make this arrangement with your landlord or letting agency to ensure the cleaning company have access to the property.  Depending upon the size of the property you may need to allow the whole day for the clean to be done.  You should not come back after a couple of hours expecting it to be completed if it is a large property or one where additional cleaning is required as this will put pressure on the cleaners and they may rush the clean, but rather leave them time to carry out the job to the highest standard.

When deciding the best time to book in your end of tenancy clean it is really important to ensure that the cleaners will have access to both water and electricity. When moving out of a property, it can be common to have both of these turned off so tenants are not paying for electricity they don’t are not using.  However, an end of tenancy clean will require both water and electricity so make sure to book in your appointment before these are turned off by your suppliers. It may also be sensible to agree with your landlord or tenant when the meter reading will take place. If the landlord is paying for the clean then this should be done before then, if it’s the tenant then it will be done after the clean. 

Another consideration when it comes to the timing of the clean is to ensure that the cleaners will have the property to themselves whilst cleaning. If as a landlord you like to hire carpet cleaners or you need to arrange for someone to come to do a repair, this will disrupt their cleaning process or may make a mess in your well cleaned property. If you know you need to book a decorator for your rental property, consider whether it would be more appropriate for this to take place once the decorators have completed their work. 

Finally, make sure you hire a pre-tenancy cleaner from a regular professional domestic cleaning company rather than an industrial one. It is an easy mistake to make but you will end up with a huge charge and they will arrive with unnecessary equipment. Ensure the cleaning company use is reputable and professional.  You may find someone cheap on Facebook for example, but can you be sure that they know what is expected of a pre-tenancy clean? 

Making sure the cleaning company offers a guarantee

Make sure there are a few days between the cleaning appointment and the end of your tenancy or if you are a landlord, before your new tenant move in. If you are not happy with the quality of work or believe something has been missed, you will have enough time to book in the cleaners for a re-clean. Most cleaning companies offer a 24 or 48 hours guarantee. A reputable cleaning company would not expect you to pay again if there is something you are not happy with, and should be happy to return, free of charge. 

Conclusion

In summary, a pre-tenancy clean is arranged by a landlord, current tenant or new tenant as a way of having a professional perform a deep clean on a property. A pre-tenancy clean is highly desirable to ensure a property is safe and healthy as well as making it presentable and immaculate for future tenants.

Living in a property for any amount of time will lead to wear and tear as well as dust and dirt gathering within the home. Regular cleaning is essential but not often done by tenants meaning that a pre-tenancy clean can be the best way to present the property to the landlord once it has been vacated. Leaving the property spotless will ensure the possibility of receiving a full deposit refund.

The cost and amount of time it will take is completely dependent on multiple factors, including the size and condition of the property and the professional cleaning company’s reputation and the products they use.

The best advice when looking to hire a pre-tenancy cleaner would be to do your research, find a reputable company, ensure you know the cost and exactly what will and won’t be covered by their cleaning service. 

This guide has covered all you need to know about hiring a pre-tenancy cleaner, so hopefully now you can research and book an appointment with ease and the knowledge to guarantee yourself a thorough, professional clean.

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