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Property maintenance: A tenant's guide to DIY

Posted on 2017-10-27

Property maintenance: A tenant's guide to DIY

When living in a rental property, you will want to make it feel like home as much as possible. However, there are certain things you won't be able to do without the permission of your landlord.

That's not to say there aren’t plenty of small DIY projects you can undertake which can give your rental property a lift, adding a personal feel without breaking the terms of your tenancy agreement.

With this in mind, we've put together a selection of DIY tips for tenants and outlined some of the jobs you could do before moving out which could mean you get more of your deposit back at the end of the tenancy.

What DIY jobs could improve your property?

Upcycle furniture

Providing you have permission from your landlord, or you have purchased the furniture yourself, upcycling provides a great way of improving your property without breaking the bank. There are so many things you can do from making an old chair great again to turning a storage crate into a shoe rack. You'll find more upcycling tips from us here.

Change the curtains

This may seem like an insignificant job, but it can prove extremely effective and beneficial. In some rental properties, you find drab, oversized and outdated curtains, which can have a negative impact on a room. This job requires minimum effort but can provide maximum benefit for tenants, and if you store your landlord’s curtains correctly and look after them, you can even take your new ones with you when you leave.

Hide wires and electricals

These days, we have an ever-increasing number of electricals and appliances in our homes. With these gadgets come wires and lots of them. Whether it's extension leads, phone chargers or wireless routers, electricals left out in the open can make a home look messy and untidy. There are plenty of innovative ways to hide or disguise electrical wiring and doing so can make your home appear sleeker, while also reducing the chances of tripping up!

And don't forget the garden…

As part of some tenancy agreements, landlords will be required to maintain the garden of the rental property for you. However, if this is not the case, then there is plenty you can do to spruce up your outdoor space. There are obvious but effective things to do like mowing the lawn, weeding and maintaining the flower beds. On top of this, you could install a small water feature or clear some space for a BBQ area in the summer.

Larger projects and renovations

In most cases, more complex and large-scale projects should be left to the professionals. If you happen to be a DIY expert or are confident of being able to carry out a project yourself, then you must ask the permission of your landlord first.

If you're considering a DIY job and you're not sure if it's something you need permission for, then it's always best practice to ask first just to make sure you're covered.

What's more, if there's something significant that you feel needs doing in your rental property, don't hesitate in asking your landlord if it is possible for either you or a professional to undertake the project.

Before moving out

There are a number of small jobs you can complete before moving out of a rental property which could work out significantly cheaper than having the cost deducted from your deposit.

-          Fill in any holes in the wall

-          Touch up paintwork

-          Remove any stains on carpets or furniture

-          Replace or repair any broken or damaged fittings, handles etc.

-          Clean the property thoroughly, paying particular attention to the kitchen and bathroom

-          Fix or replace any damaged or missing items (check the original inventory)

-          Employ a professional cleaner or tradesman to carry out any complex jobs

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