Talk to Strata
There can be rules about moving in and out of apartment buildings, especially those on busy roads or where concierge may be employed, so take some time to contact your Strata team and ask them about any restrictions involved in moving out of your apartment. These may include things like rules about where the truck can be parked, what time of day you are free to use the main elevator, using the service elevator (if one exists) and not moving in or out during busy periods like before or after work hours.
Get a moving out checklist from your landlord
Most landlords will have a moving out checklist of things they will want to inspect or key areas they think are important when moving out and preparing the apartment for the next tenants. If you own your apartment and are selling it, ask your real estate agent for their standard rental moving out checklist, as no doubt someone at their firm manages rentals. Then, work your way through the list. Often, hiring a cleaner is a worthwhile expense, especially when you get your entire bond back at the end of it all.
Read your lease
There’s several stories floating around of people not reading their leases, but one that sticks out for us is the woman who dyed her hair pink at home, which stained the bath a fluro shade that just wouldn’t wash out. She didn’t read her contract carefully, which stated that any damage done to the bathtub specifically would cost her the replacement of said bathtub. It cost her almost all of her bond, which is something no tenant wants to go through.
Clean the oven
Nearly every lease will have a stipulation requesting that you clean the oven before moving out. It’s important to start this process several days in advance, as it’s a stinky and involved process that is filled with fumes and not one you want to be rushing at the last minute. Cover yourself in old clothing that you don’t care about, put on a pair of the thickest rubber gloves you can find and if possible wear a surgical mask to protect your lungs before spraying oven cleaner. While the process isn’t much fun, you’ll almost wish you’d cleaned your oven before moving, as a clean oven is something worth marvelling.
Round up your keys
Main gate keys, letterbox keys, keys to the garbage room and garage keys… it can be frustrating how many keys an apartment requires you to have just to access the basics, and often those that aren’t used regularly are left lying around the house. These can easily become swept up in the move, dumped in the bottom of a box and only remembered when your landlord asks for them back. Carry all keys on you in the last few weeks of living somewhere, preferably in your everyday handbag or backpack, so that they can be handed over following your final clean up.
Whether you’re moving in or out, it’s a great idea to snap photos of any irregularities in the apartment like dents, cracks or funny stains. Store these for up to six months after you move out, as you never know when a dispute might arise with the next tenant!