Q: When does our contract end?
A: The 21st June, or the 14th June if you're on a 50-week contract.
Q: When do we have to be out of the house?
A: By 6pm on the final day of your tenancy. The last of you to leave the house should ensure that:
1. The heating thermostat is turned down
2. The fridges are all turned off (assuming you've already defrosted them and cleaned them out!)
3. Wedge the fridge and freezer doors open.
4. Take a note of your final gas and electricity meter readings.
5. Ensure that the property is secure, with all windows shut, burglar alarm set and doors locked.
Q: What should we do with our keys?
A: When you vacate the property, leave your key in an envelope with your name on it on the dining table.
If you're the last person to leave, post your key (in an envelope with your name on it) through the letterbox after you've locked up.
On no account should you return your keys by post or put them through the letterbox at a later date.
You'll be charged £10 for a replacement key plus £100 per set thereafter for changing the locks.
Q: Can I leave some of my things in the house or basement and pick them up later?
No, sorry.. I can't be held responsible for their safekeeping when I have tradesmen and contractors going in and out of the property during the changeover period. If your things were in the way of works, they could get broken or thrown out by accident.
Q: Can I stay a few extra days?
No - for the same reason as above.
Q: What can we do to make sure we all get our full deposits back?
A: If you follow everything on my moving-out essentials list to the letter, your deposits will undoubtedly be returned to you in full.
You'll have to clean the house thoroughly from top to bottom. That doesn't just mean your room, it means all the communal rooms too plus the halls and staircases. To make sure you don't accidentally overlook anything, download my handy cleaning checklist, print it off and divvy up the jobs fairly among you and your housemates.
After your final clean-up, empty the vacuum cleaner and fit it with a new bag. During your tenancy, cleaning filters and removing blockages in the vacuum are your responsibility, so saying that the vacuum cleaner wasn't working is not an excuse for not cleaning up! You should have reported it for repair during the year.
I know there are far more fun things to do at the end of term than cleaning, but think of it as 'paying it forward' to the next group of housemates who'll be moving in. It's good karma!
Your question not answered here?
Q: When will we get our deposits back?
A: I will send you a deductions list approximately 10 working days after you leave the house. Once any deductions are mutually agreed, I’ll release the deposit to your lead tenant within 30 days, and they are then responsible for returning your share. So, if you leave the house looking like a showhome and respond to my emails swiftly, you'll get your maximum deposit back promptly.
However, if you leave the house like a bombsite, immediately jet off backpacking to Outer Mongolia and don't pick up my emails for three months, the chances are you'll be waiting for quite some time to get your money back. It's down to you!
Don't forget to keep me updated with any change of address for your lead tenant or I won't be able to return your deposits.
Q: What shall we do with the stuff we can't take with us?
A: Don't just throw it in the dustbin. Recycle it! Read Leeds City Council's info for students on recycling. And also check out Leeds Uni Student Union's ideas for collecting all your surplus foodstuffs and good stuff that can be sent to charities.