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Dirty kitchen tops list for deposit disputes

Whip out the rubber gloves and scrub the kitchen – that’s the message to tenants looking to receive their deposits back at the end of their tenancy.

The most common reason for deposit disputes is down to cleanliness, it’s been revealed.

And the kitchen has been named as the dirtiest room at check-out.

The survey was conducted by the Tenancy Deposit Scheme (TDS) and asked over 600 landlords and agents about cleanliness in their private rented properties.

It topped the list of most frequent reasons for deposit disputes in 2020 and 2021.

64% of respondents said they had raised a deposit dispute due to cleanliness issues in the property.
This was despite 83% specifically stating tenant cleaning obligations in their tenancy agreements.

The poll asked landlords and agents which rooms of the home suffered the most issues.

Coming in first place was the kitchen at 84%.

Bedrooms, living rooms, appliances and windows were frequent offenders too.

Whilst less than half of property professionals don’t carry out interim cleaning checks during the tenancy, three quarters made it standard practice to professionally clean their rental properties before the start of each tenancy, regardless of the cleanliness from the previous tenancy.

The Dispute Service has recently published further findings in its Annual Review 2020/21 report, which goes into detail about other common causes of deposit disputes, resolutions and adjudication times.

Damage came in at second place.

Read the full report here.