What is an inventory, and why do I need one?

News at Dafydd Hardy | 02/10/2016

If you're thinking of investing in buy to let property for the first time, one of the most important and valuable things you can do before you sign up your first tenant is create an inventory.

And if you're a tenant who's about to sign on the dotted line for a new tenancy, an inventory can work in your favour too.

Creating and agreeing an inventory may seem like a lot of trouble to go to, but it could prove essential in the event of a dispute. When a tenant is about to sign a tenancy agreement, the tenant and landlord should carefully inspect each room of the property together and, using an inventory, agree the condition of the following:

  • Fixtures and fittings, such as curtain rails, light fittings, carpets and the general decorative state of the property;
  • Any furniture included in the rent, as well as things like kitchen appliances;
  • Other household items included in the rent, such as kitchen utensils and cookware.

Any existing marks to walls, frayed edges of carpets, numbers of plates/pans/cutlery items, and other items that might later be the subject of dispute should be marked on two copies of the inventory and signed by both parties, each of whom should then keep a copy.

When the tenancy eventually comes to an end, the inventory should again be referred to by both parties. Any loss or damage that has occurred since the signing of the original inventory can be noted and either remedied (by repair or replacement at the tenant's cost), or deducted from the deposit paid by the tenant at the beginning of the tenancy.

If you're a landlord, using a professional lettings service such as those provided by Dafydd Hardy can take much of the work out of the process, as the lettings agent will normally be responsible for conditions reports and inventories, leaving less work for the landlord. This can also provide peace of mind for the tenant, who may feel more secure dealing with a professional lettings specialist than direct with a landlord.

You can find out more about the services provided by Dafydd Hardy's lettings and property management teams at http://www.dafyddhardy.co.uk/lettings.htm.