“The deposit can be used to cover any unpaid rent/equipment bills, damage or cleaning costs, some contracts also include penalty clauses, for example if the keys to the house are delivered late the landlord should refund the remainder of the deposit to the tenant, if you have a joint tenancy the money can be refunded to either of you, not necessarily to each of you.
Reasonable wear and tear is acceptable, neglect is not, so a stain on the carpet you walk on is acceptable but a beer spilled on the wall from the last party is not, some students have problems because the Leeds student accommodation wasn’t clean when they moved in, or the landlord didn’t do the maintenance he promised.
And while these worries and resentments can build up over time as you live in the house, the best thing to do is try to put these problems aside and look at the rental agreement you signed with your landlord as a business contract.
Plan your move well in advance
About 2 months before the end of your tenancy, invite your landlord to come and inspect the property and tell him that you are planning to move out and if there is anything else you need to do to get your deposit back. Find out how and when you can get your deposit back and how to return the keys to the landlord.
Some landlords expect you to pass the keys on to the next tenants, which is very unprofessional and will probably mean that the landlord hasn’t seen the Leeds student accommodation property when you move out. Planning your move will help you get your deposit back, and it will be much easier if you start cleaning and clearing the room earlier rather than putting it off until the last minute, which may also save you some money in the long run.
When cleaning the bathrooms, kitchen and common areas of the rooms, don’t forget to clean the inside of the oven and fridge. If there was a storage room when you moved in or if you have your own storage area, check it thoroughly to make sure everything is still there. All the things you have to replace are on a like-for-like basis and not on a new-for-old basis!
What you need to do when you move out
Check that you have switched off all your equipment and cancelled your phone and broadband accounts, take meter readings and inform the relevant companies. Contact your bank/savings office to update your address.
Contact TV Licensing to receive a refund.
Contact the DVLA (Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency) to change your address.
Set up your mail re-sending.
If there is a bank account for the whole house, there should be enough money left over to pay for these final accounts, with the remainder divided between the different tenants.
Make sure you have contact details for each of your flatmates for future communication.
Lock all windows and doors and return the keys to the landlord.
Finally, when you leave, it is advisable to take a few photos of the house and rooms.
In conclusion: It is important to deal with the expiry of the rental contract and the deposit issue in the UK. It is a legal issue and if it is not dealt with properly and a shady landlord swallows the deposit for a UK student rental, it will only lead to more trouble.”