If you have ever wondered about the importance of producing an impartial inventory report that would stand up in court, you should consider the findings of the latest TDS report.  It reveals that tenants are the overall winners in the race to claim a deposit at the end of a tenancy. In fact, 20.25% of tenants get the whole of their deposit returned as opposed to 18.21% of landlords hoping to claim a whole deposit.

The report shows that the highest single cause for complaint was over cleaning.  The quality of cleaning by tenants was disputed by landlords in 53% of adjudications. Overall damage to the property claims totalled 46%, redecoration 29% and disputes over the state of the garden at the end of the tenancy was 14%. The conclusion reached in the report is that the main reason landlords fail to win their claims is through a lack of accurate and detailed evidence. This has been a constant problem since the start of the deposit protection schemes in 2007.  It seems that landlords are slow to learn – and keep making the same mistakes.

Evidence is essential for winning tenant disputes

The chances of winning a court claim are significantly improved with evidence and the more accurate the evidence the more watertight the claim.  This will include the tenancy agreement, the check in inventory – preferably signed by the tenant – and a good detailed unbiased check out report.  Skribes are independent inventory specialists and provide landlords with thorough photographic evidence at key stages of the tenancy.

All of the deposit schemes are aware of the problems of inventory documentation being produced by a landlord or an in house clerk since the resulting document “could be perceived to be biased”. The recommendation is therefore that the only safe way is to have these documents produced by a professional independent inventory clerk.

All AIIC members are regulated and must adhere to high standards. They must comply with the Code of Practice and be fully insured. Independent Clerks such as the team at Skribes will produce a clear detailed inventory and check in and out report that will stand as vital evidence in any dispute.”