Advertising
Advertising

11 End of Tenancy Cleaning Tips to Ensure You Don’t Lose your Deposit

11 End of Tenancy Cleaning Tips to Ensure You Don’t Lose your Deposit

Before taking on your ‘End of Tenancy’ cleaning, you must know it’s to your advantage if it’s done thoroughly clean and meeting all the requirements as stipulated in your tenancy agreement. If this is done otherwise, winning back your tenancy deposit will be the most difficult thing there ever could be.

Ensure that any damage caused by you or incurred during your tenancy period is replaced. If this is left for your landlord to do and send you a bill, there are chances that the cost will be higher than you ever would expect. Give yourself enough time to do your end of tenancy cleaning before the deal time so as to ensure perfect cleaning and inspection of this property to your advantage.

Do the end of tenancy cleaning yourself

How you chose to do your end of tenancy cleaning is your decision to make. not the property owner’s. The property owner can’t force you to hire any particular ‘end of tenancy’ cleaning company to do the cleaning. The cheapest option is to do the end of tenancy cleaning yourself. This is a great way to save some moving-out expenses.

Before starting your cleaning, ensure to contact the Property Owner or the Letting Agent and ask for the final inspection checklist. To be sure you’ve done enough cleaning; your work should be based on your checklist and the check-in records.

If you must pass the final inspection, you have to clean the following items at minimum by taking these steps:

Advertising

1. Visit the Kitchen

Remove everything from the cupboards and shelves. Remove all the crumbs and deposits, clean both inside and outside and wipe thoroughly clean with a dry cloth. Pull out all appliances and wash beneath and behind walls.

Ensure the appliances are thoroughly clean, both the washing machine and the dishwasher filter and the soap tray. Clean the refrigerator and leave the doors open to prevent mould while the switch is off from the main. Remove all fridge trays, racks and cabinets, make sure they are kept in the best-cleaned shape possible and this also should be repeated for similar appliances having same features.

2. The Hob and the Oven

If the oven is not cleaned always, it builds up thick deposits of grimes, household dust, grease and burnt food deposits. Nothing can be as worse as cleaning someone else oven while moving into a new apartment. This is the most difficult of the cleaning jobs that requires a lot of energy, time and harsh cleaning agents. As hard and tiring this may be, make sure it’s done to its perfect state. It is interesting to note that the oven is the first item usually checked during the inspection process.

Also, ensure the Hob is not left out. The racks, burners, baking trays, switches, handles and all other surfaces should be kept clean. Don’t start cleaning the oven at all if you are not ready to put in the extra effort to get it to the perfect state. It might end up being worse.

3. The Living Room

The major work to do in the living room is extensive dusting and vacuuming to perfection. Empty all the shelves and clean the cabinets, bookshelves, coffee table and all cupboards and TV set.

Advertising

As the living room often features full bookshelves and extensive decorations, there are many awkward surfaces and items to clean. Therefore, as easy as it seems, it’s often very time-consuming.

4. Visit the Bathroom

Wipe everything in the bathroom incorporating the sink, bath, toilet, tiles, mirror and all other accessories. Check the plug holes and drains to ensure they are clear from blockages and allow easy water run-off.

Check all metallic surfaces like the faucets, shower and drain grates and make sure to remove mould, limescale and soap scum buildup. Check if the shower head has some of its holes plugged. If it’s sure the holes are plugged, you have to make sure is cleaned and it’s running properly.

5. The Windows

If you can’t reach the windows outside, make sure to clean them well from inside and call a window cleaner to help with cleaning the outside. For cleaning glass and windows, vinegar and alcohol remain the best two products to use.

Fix all cracked panes unless they appear otherwise in the check-in records. You must know that windows make the first impression on the property general hygiene and if you can make them as clean as possible, the property owner may not pay more attention to other spots.

Advertising

6. The Walls

Check for scuffs marks on the walls. Wash them off if possible but if not, paint them over with an emulsion of the same colour. If the marks are too many, it’s very important to do this, else the property owner may take the decision to repaint the walls and charge you over for the decoration.

If the marks are too many, it’s very important to do this, else the property owner may take the decision to repaint the walls and charge you over for the decoration.

7. The Furniture

If you live with small children, pets or smoke cigarettes, you should vacuum your furniture and wash it using the dry wash solution. The stuffing must look unspoiled; no hair, bad odour or smells.

For the wooden upholstery, you need to look for scuff marks, scratches and dings. Rub the scuff marks and scratches with coffee grounds and almonds. If these marks or scratches are minor, these will mask the damage off.

8. The Curtains

Wash the curtains if they are washable following the washing instructions. If this is too much for you, a call to the dry cleaner should be the best. Just dust the curtains rods and all fabric blinds in the property. Dusts both sides of the venetian blind slates and repair or replace the blinds if they aren’t anymore presentable.

Advertising

9. The Carpets or Rugs

If you need the carpets or rugs to look more like new ones, the best way to get this perfectly done is using a steam cleaner.

If this is not at your disposal, it doesn’t cost much to hire one. Vacuum all carpets and wipe hard with a wire brush to remove all the hair or dirt captured in the fibres.

10. The Staircases and Hallways

These are areas that face a lot of traffic and would need more serious cleaning. These areas draw a lot of attention.

11. The Garden and the Exterior

The garden shed may need cleaning and tidying up. Sweep up leaves and dirt from courtyard areas. Keep the flower bed in good order where applicable and mow the lawns.

Meeting these cleaning demands and using the check-in records as a guide will guarantee your safe deposit return and save you from a lot of issues that usually arises with the end of tenancy cleaning.

Featured photo credit: www.bestvacuumworld.com via bestvacuumworld.com

More by this author

MICHAEL LILY

Writer/entrepreneural development specialist

What Is Love and What Is Not 4 Proven Ways to Strengthen Relationships 5 Things You Must Do If You’re Moving From Japan To The US Do All Men Cheat and Why Do They Cheat on Their Loved One? Five Tips to Ensure Online Dating Success After 60

Trending in Communication

1 7 Hardest Languages to Learn For English Speakers 2 8 Simple Ways to Be a Better Listener 3 11 Tips for Maintaining a Positive Attitude Every Day 4 What Is the Meaning of Life? A Guide to Living With Meaning 5 How to Stop Being a Perfectionist (Step-by-Step Guide)

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on October 22, 2020

8 Simple Ways to Be a Better Listener

8 Simple Ways to Be a Better Listener

How would you feel if you were sharing a personal story and noticed that the person to whom you were speaking wasn’t really listening? You probably wouldn’t be too thrilled.

Unfortunately, that is the case for many people. Most individuals are not good listeners. They are good pretenders. The thing is, true listening requires work—more work than people are willing to invest. Quality conversation is about “give and take.” Most people, however, want to just give—their words, that is. Being on the receiving end as the listener may seem boring, but it’s essential.

When you are attending to someone and paying attention to what they’re saying, it’s a sign of caring and respect. The hitch is that attending requires an act of will, which sometimes goes against what our minds naturally do—roaming around aimlessly and thinking about whatnot, instead of listening—the greatest act of thoughtfulness.

Without active listening, people often feel unheard and unacknowledged. That’s why it’s important for everyone to learn how to be a better listener.

What Makes People Poor Listeners?

Good listening skills can be learned, but first, let’s take a look at some of the things that you might be doing that makes you a poor listener.

1. You Want to Talk to Yourself

Well, who doesn’t? We all have something to say, right? But when you are looking at someone pretending to be listening while, all along, they’re mentally planning all the amazing things they’re going to say, it is a disservice to the speaker.

Yes, maybe what the other person is saying is not the most exciting thing in the world. Still, they deserve to be heard. You always have the ability to steer the conversation in another direction by asking questions.

It’s okay to want to talk. It’s normal, even. Keep in mind, however, that when your turn does come around, you’ll want someone to listen to you.

2. You Disagree With What Is Being Said

This is another thing that makes you an inadequate listener—hearing something with which you disagree with and immediately tuning out. Then, you lie in wait so you can tell the speaker how wrong they are. You’re eager to make your point and prove the speaker wrong. You think that once you speak your “truth,” others will know how mistaken the speaker is, thank you for setting them straight, and encourage you to elaborate on what you have to say. Dream on.

Disagreeing with your speaker, however frustrating that might be, is no reason to tune them out and ready yourself to spew your staggering rebuttal. By listening, you might actually glean an interesting nugget of information that you were previously unaware of.

3. You Are Doing Five Other Things While You’re “Listening”

It is impossible to listen to someone while you’re texting, reading, playing Sudoku, etc. But people do it all the time—I know I have.

Advertising

I’ve actually tried to balance my checkbook while pretending to listen to the person on the other line. It didn’t work. I had to keep asking, “what did you say?” I can only admit this now because I rarely do it anymore. With work, I’ve succeeded in becoming a better listener. It takes a great deal of concentration, but it’s certainly worth it.

If you’re truly going to listen, then you must: listen! M. Scott Peck, M.D., in his book The Road Less Travel, says, “you cannot truly listen to anyone and do anything else at the same time.” If you are too busy to actually listen, let the speaker know, and arrange for another time to talk. It’s simple as that!

4. You Appoint Yourself as Judge

While you’re “listening,” you decide that the speaker doesn’t know what they’re talking about. As the “expert,” you know more. So, what’s the point of even listening?

To you, the only sound you hear once you decide they’re wrong is, “Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah!” But before you bang that gavel, just know you may not have all the necessary information. To do that, you’d have to really listen, wouldn’t you? Also, make sure you don’t judge someone by their accent, the way they sound, or the structure of their sentences.

My dad is nearly 91. His English is sometimes a little broken and hard to understand. People wrongly assume that he doesn’t know what he’s talking about—they’re quite mistaken. My dad is a highly intelligent man who has English as his second language. He knows what he’s saying and understands the language perfectly.

Keep that in mind when listening to a foreigner, or someone who perhaps has a difficult time putting their thoughts into words.

Now, you know some of the things that make for an inferior listener. If none of the items above resonate with you, great! You’re a better listener than most.

How To Be a Better Listener

For conversation’s sake, though, let’s just say that maybe you need some work in the listening department, and after reading this article, you make the decision to improve. What, then, are some of the things you need to do to make that happen? How can you be a better listener?

1. Pay Attention

A good listener is attentive. They’re not looking at their watch, phone, or thinking about their dinner plans. They’re focused and paying attention to what the other person is saying. This is called active listening.

According to Skills You Need, “active listening involves listening with all senses. As well as giving full attention to the speaker, it is important that the ‘active listener’ is also ‘seen’ to be listening—otherwise, the speaker may conclude that what they are talking about is uninteresting to the listener.”[1]

As I mentioned, it’s normal for the mind to wander. We’re human, after all. But a good listener will rein those thoughts back in as soon as they notice their attention waning.

Advertising

I want to note here that you can also “listen” to bodily cues. You can assume that if someone keeps looking at their watch or over their shoulder, their focus isn’t on the conversation. The key is to just pay attention.

2. Use Positive Body Language

You can infer a lot from a person’s body language. Are they interested, bored, or anxious?

A good listener’s body language is open. They lean forward and express curiosity in what is being said. Their facial expression is either smiling, showing concern, conveying empathy, etc. They’re letting the speaker know that they’re being heard.

People say things for a reason—they want some type of feedback. For example, you tell your spouse, “I had a really rough day!” and your husband continues to check his newsfeed while nodding his head. Not a good response.

But what if your husband were to look up with questioning eyes, put his phone down, and say, “Oh, no. What happened?” How would feel, then? The answer is obvious.

According to Alan Gurney,[2]

“An active listener pays full attention to the speaker and ensures they understand the information being delivered. You can’t be distracted by an incoming call or a Facebook status update. You have to be present and in the moment.

Body language is an important tool to ensure you do this. The correct body language makes you a better active listener and therefore more ‘open’ and receptive to what the speaker is saying. At the same time, it indicates that you are listening to them.”

3. Avoid Interrupting the Speaker

I am certain you wouldn’t want to be in the middle of a sentence only to see the other person holding up a finger or their mouth open, ready to step into your unfinished verbiage. It’s rude and causes anxiety. You would, more than likely, feel a need to rush what you’re saying just to finish your sentence.

Interrupting is a sign of disrespect. It is essentially saying, “what I have to say is much more important than what you’re saying.” When you interrupt the speaker, they feel frustrated, hurried, and unimportant.

Interrupting a speaker to agree, disagree, argue, etc., causes the speaker to lose track of what they are saying. It’s extremely frustrating. Whatever you have to say can wait until the other person is done.

Advertising

Be polite and wait your turn!

4. Ask Questions

Asking questions is one of the best ways to show you’re interested. If someone is telling you about their ski trip to Mammoth, don’t respond with, “that’s nice.” That would show a lack of interest and disrespect. Instead, you can ask, “how long have you been skiing?” “Did you find it difficult to learn?” “What was your favorite part of the trip?” etc. The person will think highly of you and consider you a great conversationalist just by you asking a few questions.

5. Just Listen

This may seem counterintuitive. When you’re conversing with someone, it’s usually back and forth. On occasion, all that is required of you is to listen, smile, or nod your head, and your speaker will feel like they’re really being heard and understood.

I once sat with a client for 45 minutes without saying a word. She came into my office in distress. I had her sit down, and then she started crying softly. I sat with her—that’s all I did. At the end of the session, she stood, told me she felt much better, and then left.

I have to admit that 45 minutes without saying a word was tough. But she didn’t need me to say anything. She needed a safe space in which she could emote without interruption, judgment, or me trying to “fix” something.

6. Remember and Follow Up

Part of being a great listener is remembering what the speaker has said to you, then following up with them.

For example, in a recent conversation you had with your co-worker Jacob, he told you that his wife had gotten a promotion and that they were contemplating moving to New York. The next time you run into Jacob, you may want to say, “Hey, Jacob! Whatever happened with your wife’s promotion?” At this point, Jacob will know you really heard what he said and that you’re interested to see how things turned out. What a gift!

According to new research, “people who ask questions, particularly follow-up questions, may become better managers, land better jobs, and even win second dates.”[3]

It’s so simple to show you care. Just remember a few facts and follow up on them. If you do this regularly, you will make more friends.

7. Keep Confidential Information Confidential

If you really want to be a better listener, listen with care. If what you’re hearing is confidential, keep it that way, no matter how tempting it might be to tell someone else, especially if you have friends in common. Being a good listener means being trustworthy and sensitive with shared information.

Whatever is told to you in confidence is not to be revealed. Assure your speaker that their information is safe with you. They will feel relieved that they have someone with whom they can share their burden without fear of it getting out.

Advertising

Keeping someone’s confidence helps to deepen your relationship. Also, “one of the most important elements of confidentiality is that it helps to build and develop trust. It potentially allows for the free flow of information between the client and worker and acknowledges that a client’s personal life and all the issues and problems that they have belong to them.”[4]

Be like a therapist: listen and withhold judgment.

NOTE: I must add here that while therapists keep everything in a session confidential, there are exceptions:

  1. If the client may be an immediate danger to himself or others.
  2. If the client is endangering a population that cannot protect itself, such as in the case of a child or elder abuse.

8. Maintain Eye Contact

When someone is talking, they are usually saying something they consider meaningful. They don’t want their listener reading a text, looking at their fingernails, or bending down to pet a pooch on the street. A speaker wants all eyes on them. It lets them know that what they’re saying has value.

Eye contact is very powerful. It can relay many things without anything being said. Currently, it’s more important than ever with the Covid-19 Pandemic. People can’t see your whole face, but they can definitely read your eyes.

By eye contact, I don’t mean a hard, creepy stare—just a gaze in the speaker’s direction will do. Make it a point the next time you’re in a conversation to maintain eye contact with your speaker. Avoid the temptation to look anywhere but at their face. I know it’s not easy, especially if you’re not interested in what they’re talking about. But as I said, you can redirect the conversation in a different direction or just let the person know you’ve got to get going.

Final Thoughts

Listening attentively will add to your connection with anyone in your life. Now, more than ever, when people are so disconnected due to smartphones and social media, listening skills are critical.

You can build better, more honest, and deeper relationships by simply being there, paying attention, and asking questions that make the speaker feel like what they have to say matters.

And isn’t that a great goal? To make people feel as if they matter? So, go out and start honing those listening skills. You’ve got two great ears. Now use them!

More Tips on How to Be a Better Listener

Featured photo credit: Joshua Rodriguez via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Skills You Need: Active Listening
[2] Filtered: Body language for active listening
[3] Forbes: People Will Like You More If You Start Asking Follow-up Questions
[4] TAFE NSW Sydney eLearning Moodle: Confidentiality

Read Next