Landlords warned over ‘inventory ignorance’

Landlords warned over ‘inventory ignorance’

14:13 PM, 9th August 2022, About 10 months ago 6

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The Association of Independent Inventory Clerks (AIIC) claims that the topic of inventories in the property industry requires more attention.

They say that landlords and agents who do not put the right processes in place could end up accruing unnecessary costs.

The AIIC argues that although inventories are not compulsory in the property industry, they are a necessary protective measure that the letting industry ought to rely on and get professionally done.

The false narrative surrounding inventories

Inventories allow letting agents and landlords to keep a close eye on every aspect of a property investment.

These detailed records hold long-term value because they are an essential preventative measure that circumvents money from being wasted further down the line.

Daniel Evans, the chair of the AIIC and recently re-elected to serve again, said: “One of the most damaging and widespread narratives in the property industry is that by not having an inventory carried out, you will save money.

“In reality, no inventory means no financial safeguard.”

He added: “Without this essential record of the state of the property and its contents, landlords put themselves at risk of losing hefty sums of money.

“In the property industry, the way to save money is not by being frugal, but by understanding the legal requirements needed to let a home and making sure that these are covered in the safest possible way. Inventories provide all parties with exactly this.

“Of course, not paying for a service means you save some change in the short term, but this decision is likely to be detrimental to the future of the let in the long-term.”

Use a professional

Landlords and letting agents have a range of responsibilities they must adhere to – so those who make the decision to conduct inventories themselves are less likely to produce a meaningful inventory, the AIIC says.

Mr Evans said: “Too often landlords underestimate the skill that is required to carry out an inventory.

“They end up missing out vital details and the inventory does not protect them.”

He added: “The fact of the matter is agents and landlords without the essential inventory training and experience are unable to conduct an accurate and in-depth inventory.”

Money can be saved with an inventory clerk

Mr Evans said: “Large sums of money can be saved with the help of a vigilant and diligent inventory clerk.

“By contrast, doing the inventory yourself can cost more in the future. It can even be as bad as not doing one at all as an inaccurate inventory is unlikely to protect any party during a court ruling.”

He added: “When you have a robust inventory, you will know exactly how the property was at the start of the tenancy and an unbiased comparison of how it is at the end can be made.”

Mr Evans says that when deposit disputes arise, landlords must successfully prove their losses and that damage occurred during the tenancy to recover any costs.

Trained inventory clerk will provide accurate descriptions

He points out that a trained inventory clerk will provide accurate descriptions and time and date stamped photographs that will support this, along with a record of the walls, floor, fixtures, fittings and other items will be detailed and lead to an unbiased result.”

Mr Evans said: “Furthermore, during a time where rental reform is a top priority, landlords and letting agents need to ensure their homes meet the industry standard more than ever.

“Professional inventories can make letting agents and landlords remain confident even when deposit disputes arise.

“They are the only pieces of evidence presented to the adjudicators that ensure they award funds in a fair and unbiased way.”

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8:53 AM, 10th August 2022, About 10 months ago

I do my own inventories, adding any comments, together with photographs and then ask the tenant to confirm it is a true and accurate record.

Freda Blogs

12:36 PM, 10th August 2022, About 10 months ago

I still have professional inventory clerks for the Check ins and Outs because (I hope) their independence will save me grief in a deposit dispute, although they are not failsafe as the clerks miss things, and I often have to point out errors and omissions in their reports.

Pre Tenant Fees Act, the norm was that LL would pay for one inspection and T for the other (can’t remember which way round), but now LL gets to pay for both, another erosion of margin and abdication of T accountability, as are all these T friendly govt measures.

If the Assoc of Inventory Clerks really wants LLs to deliver good value from their ad campaign and grow their business, they should be lobbying govt for an exception to be made under the TFA, so we can return to the old way of sharing the costs of their services for the benefit of all concerned. They might get more LL business then. Can’t see that happening any time soon though.

David Judd

15:16 PM, 10th August 2022, About 10 months ago

Note: Not all inventory clerks are the same. The cost can be expensive. Checkin when checkin tenants then another inventory when they checkout. If there is any damage etc, once its fixed you have to do another inventory. In this scenario thats 3 inventories and depending on size of property will cost £hundreds

Rob Crawford

17:13 PM, 10th August 2022, About 10 months ago

I have a professional inventory clerk do the checkin inventory & condition report. However, I tend not to get a professional in to do the checkout unless I believe there to be substantial damage etc. I will always check myself a week before the tenant leaves and judge whether or not a professional check is done. The reason I have adopted this process is a result of limited returns on claims not covering the costs charged by the clerk. I don't do the checkin myself as I know a third party "professional" opinion carries more weight than my own, also the time to compile my own checkin is unacceptable to me.

Trek Inventories

15:14 PM, 18th August 2022, About 10 months ago

Finally an intelligent and realistic article by the AIIC rather than the unintelligible drivel perpetuated by the previous chair.

Trek Inventories

15:14 PM, 18th August 2022, About 10 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Freda Blogs at 10/08/2022 - 12:36
The fees should be "hidden " in the rental

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