December 18, 2017

Some tenants do not treat the property they are renting as their own. Others simply have bad cleaning habits and no respect for other people’s belongings. Whichever the case may be with your tenants, here is what you can do to regain hope of ever renting your property again at a decent price.

Fix Your Floors

The best thing you can hope for from bad tenants is that they have caused damage to your property by not being careful. At least, they did not set it on fire. Wooden floors are particularly sensitive and easy to damage if you are moving furniture across it. It can leave marks and scratches. Shallow scratches can be concealed with a wood stain marker, wood wax sticks and by applying a layer of top coating. Deep scratches can be filled with wood filling and refinished.

Clean the Mess

If you define someone as a bad tenant, to begin with, they are probably not very likely to clean up after they leave the premises. Some people can be extremely messy, but that’s nothing compared to the fact that there are hoarders among tenants. If this is the case with you, do not even attempt to clean this out yourself as it may be hazardous. Hire a junk removal service to do this for you. Once they manage to clear out everything, hire professional cleaners to come and clean as much as they can. It will not be spotless, but it will at least be safe to touch things. Deep clean your furniture, curtains, and carpets. If the treatment is not helping, replace what you have to.

Pest Control

This sounds like a must after the mess you have just cleaned up. Have someone come in and inspect the property for you. Act according to their recommendation. Now that you are redecorating, try not leaving windows and doors open to avoid any uninvited guests letting themselves in. Open only those windows which have screens on them.


Months of superficial cleaning, or no cleaning at all, particularly in the bathroom and the kitchen can cause mold stains and limescale build-ups. Quite inconveniently, these two rooms are very important to those looking to rent so restoring them into their original state should be your prerogative. If the fixtures still do not look their best after detailed cleaning, replace them. That is a small price to play when compared to the maintenance expenses of an empty property. Clean the walls, apply mold treatments and repaint them. You can even repaint the tiles. Apart from limescale, kitchens can be covered in grease and sticky combination of dust and condensation residue from cooking. Luckily, these are usually removable by a thorough cleaning. Be careful what you use to clean, you do not want to damage the countertops. Avoid steel wool, although it may seem to be the obvious solution.

Paint the House

This is probably something you have to do after every tenant leaves. In this case, it may be a bit more difficult if there are chips or greasy stains on walls. Perhaps, they have even painted a graffiti or wrote on them. You can remove all of this and prepare the walls to be painted. Colour Life Painting, however, recommends hiring professional painters to do this job. Do this not for the sake of painting but for cleaning and preparation.  A fresh coat of paint might not be able to cover up everything or it may not stick properly unless the walls are prepped.

Spruce your Garden

If your tenants have been neglecting your garden the same way they have neglected everything else, you are in for some serious work. Curb appeal is what advertises a property. Start with big things. Trim the trees and the bushes. Clean the lawn and assess its state. Find ways of reviving it.  Now you can move onto getting rid of the withered plants and cleaning the flower beds. Buy plants, already in bloom and plant them in your garden, along with a new layer of mulch. Your yard is now decent, but it probably does not look the same way it did originally. Purchase pieces of garden art and some décor for your front entrance.

Replace Appliances

If any of the appliances you have listed in your offer are broken, replace them. You can find cheaper, used alternatives. There are used appliances available which are still in pristine shape and you may save up a bit by buying new ones for a property you are renting. Check the lights and the switches throughout the house and repair them or replace them if need be. Make sure that all of the light bulbs are working.

After having done all of this, your house will again look the way you remember it. In some cases, the deposit you decide to keep cannot make up or pay for the work you had to have done in order to restore your property.

Author Bio: Steven Clarke is a business consultant, DIY enthusiast and a regular contributor to several websites. He likes to write about real estate, landscaping, gardening, home decor, interior and exterior design. When not working on new projects, he likes to spend his time in the great outdoors.

If you liked this article, subscribe to Rentometer's email newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest trends in rental housing.