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Tips & Advice

Avoid losing money from your deposit

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Cleaning is the number one cause of arguments between flatmates, but it’s not only discussions with flatmates that can get a little sticky. Renters are losing their deposit due to cleaning-related issues every year.

We recently asked if you've ever lost money from your deposit and how you handle chores with flatmates.

Here's what you told us:
● Almost two-thirds of renters (63%) have had deposit deductions for cleaning issues, costing a whopping £724 million in the UK each year.
● The average amount deducted from renters’ deposits comes in at £250 per tenancy/person.
● Two-thirds of renters didn’t contest these deductions, but of those who did, 41% managed to negotiate a better deal with their landlord.

How you handle chores in a flatshare:
28% of you said you don't have any system and just clean when needed, but this often leads to conflict. Almost three in five (59%) renters have argued with flatmates about cleaning, even though ‘similar cleanliness standards’ was ranked as the second most important quality in a flatmate in a recent SpareRoom poll.

27% of renters say they've created a cleaning rota. A rota can be a good way to avoid drama and ensure responsibilities are shared.

Only 17% of renters said they paid for a professional clean prior to moving out. Landlords can't legally demand you pay for a professional clean, but it might be a good idea to minimise the risk of deposit deductions, especially if you can't rally the troops to do a deep clean.

How often should you deep clean your appliances?
Many household chores lay forgotten until moving day, when it’s tricky to reverse the effects of greasy ovens and weather-beaten windows. Here's how often you should deep clean appliances so you can stay on top of them prior to moving out day.

Oven - Often the most dreaded appliance to clean, generally an oven should be deep cleaned every three months to avoid grease build-up and keep things sparkling, which may come as a shock to the 13% of renters who said they’d never once cleaned it!
Dishwasher - A whopping 31% of renters said they’d never cleaned their dishwasher, and why would they? It cleans itself, right? Wrong. Although your dishwasher does a great job of cleaning dishes, it still needs its own TLC, and a dedicated dishwasher cleaner will do the job, removing mineral buildup and detergent residue that may be trapped within the machine.
Fridge - When fresh food is involved, it seems Brits are pretty good at staying on top of cleaning. Whilst it’s recommended that you deep clean your fridge every few months, nearly a quarter of Brits (24%) say they give it a clean every week. Having said this, a deep clean should always involve removing food and storing in a cool bag, before switching off, removing all drawers and shelving and getting into every nook and cranny!
Windows - 11% of renters have never cleaned their windows, meaning streaks, stains and dirt build-up. Although regular exterior window cleaning isn’t essential, we should be cleaning them at least twice a year - if your flat is above ground floor, speak to your landlord or building maintenance team to discuss professional cleaning.


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