When a tenant notifies you that they’re vacating your rental property at the end of the lease term, you’ll likely begin thinking about the turnover process and how quickly you can get the home rented out again.
Before you put together the listing and line up showings, however, you’ll have to facilitate a move out process that works for you and your departing tenant.
Here are a few of the simple steps you’ll have to take to complete the current tenancy and start thinking about the next.
Step 1: Provide Clear Move-Out Instructions in Your Fort Worth Lease
The lease agreement you and your tenant sign should have specific instructions on what a tenant needs to do when they’re ready to move out. This starts with the notice period. Most Fort Worth lease agreements will require at least a 30-day notice period. Once you’ve established that your tenant has provided the appropriate notice, check your lease and give your tenants a summary of the relevant lease language.
Send a letter or an email with specific things they’ll need before they vacate, including any cleaning requirements or actions that may be necessary to return the property to the condition it was in when it was first leased. When they have written instructions and requirements, your tenants cannot be confused about their responsibilities. It helps to communicate early and frequently.
Step 2: Collect Keys, Remotes, and a Forwarding Address
Part of your instructions should be how you want the keys to be returned. There might also be garage door openers, gate remotes, and other property-specific items that the tenant will need to leave behind. Some owners just want the keys left on the kitchen counter. Others will want to collect them in person.
Decide how you want to do it, and let the tenants know.
Always remind tenants that you’ll need their forwarding address. This is to ensure the speedy return of their security deposit.
Step 3: Inspect Your Property
After tenants have moved out, you need to get inside the home as quickly as possible to conduct an inspection. Use the same inspection notes and checklist you used when completing your move-in inspection. Your goal here is to compare the condition of the home before the tenants took possession to the way that the home looks now, at the end of their lease term.
Make notes and take photos. If you’re going to deduct from the security deposit for tenant damage, you’ll need to be able to support those claims.
Step 4: Return the Departing Tenant’s Security Deposit
Texas security deposit law requires that you return your tenant’s deposit within 30 days of moving out.
If the property is in excellent condition, you’ll send the whole deposit to their forwarding address. If you’re keeping any part of the deposit because of damage, unpaid rent, or overdue utilities, you’ll need to send an itemization to the tenant along with any money that they are getting back. That itemized list of deductions will reflect what you charged and why.
The move out process can be tricky sometimes, especially if your tenants are pushing back against any potential security deposit deductions. For some help and additional advice, please contact us at Trend Property & Management. We’re here to help with all your Fort Worth property management needs. We also serve Keller, Saginaw, Hurst, Weatherford, and the surrounding areas.