Accidental Damage vs. Wear & Tear

Some landlords have unrealistic expectations that their property will remain in exactly the same condition at the end of the lease as when tenants first move in.

The reality is though, that wear and tear on a rental property will occur over time. Landlords should expect a level of wear and tear on their rental property while it is being tenanted.

It is important to understand the difference between accidental damage and wear and tear. While tailored landlord insurance may cover claims for accidental damage, wear and tear is generally excluded and cannot be claimed.

Accidental damage is defined as being caused by a sudden and unexpected event. This might include spilling red wine on the carpet. In contrast, wear and tear accumulates over time.

An example might be carpets. Depending on the quality of the carpet, its life span could be eight to fifteen years. This means that if a tenant has been in the property for a number of years, you can expect there to be signs of foot traffic and flattened or bare patches.

In insurance terms the carpet has not been damaged accidentally or maliciously, but may be in a reasonable condition given the tenant’s time in the property.

It’s like living in your own home – over time there will be signs you have lived there, but this wear and tear cannot be claimed on insurance.

One of the main reasons landlords confuse wear and tear for accidental damage is because after leasing their property they often don’t see it again until the end of the rental agreement. This is why it is important for your Property Manager to carry out regular inspections and advise you on the property’s upkeep.

Examples of accidental damage

  • Spilling red wine on carpet
  • Dent in the wall caused by tenant moving furniture
  • Cracked floor tiles after a heavy saucepan is dropped

Examples of wear and tear

  • Foot traffic marks on carpets
  • Minor scuff marks on floor coverings or paintwork

Source: Terri Scheer – www.terrischeer.com.au

261 Responses to “Accidental Damage vs. Wear & Tear”

  • Elena says:

    Hi there
    Where can i find out more information about how to determine what is ‘wear-and-tear’ vs ‘accidental damage’.
    My tenant has just move out leaving some damage to the apartment, which I believe is not -wear-and-tear’, he argues otherwise. I strognly believe that I am not being unrealistic, but would like to have a 3rd party opinion. Any advise on who I can approach to help me with that? Thank you. Elena

    • Hi Elena,

      Thanks for your comment.

      Do you have an agent who manages your property? If so, we recommend seeking their opinion. If not, the best thing for you to do would be to refer to the original condition report. This should outline the condition of the property before the tenant moved in and you can then compare it to the condition now. Consider each mark or damage and ask yourself the question “is this reasonable fair wear and tear or accidental damage”? It is common for people to have a different opinion about reasonable fair wear and tear however consider “has this mark or scratch occurred simply because the property has been lived in or does it look as though it has been damaged by accident or on purpose?”

      Were photos taken before the tenant moved in? If so, it’d be good to refer to them as well.

      If you can’t come to an agreement with the tenant, the only other option is to take the matter to the Consumer, Trader and Tenancy Tribunal and go through the conciliation process there.

      I hope this helps.

      If you have any further questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

      Regards,
      Vanessa

  • Elena says:

    Thank you for your reply. Elena

  • ali says:

    hi, i’m about to face a conciliation process about a dispute over a small stain in the carpet that I apparantly caused during my 2and half year tenancy at a unit.the other room’s carpet had stains in when I moved in(on entry cond report) which i had removed at my own expense. the remainder of the unit is in immaculate condition, i never had complaints from the agents with inspections. they are claiming $360 for 3sq m with <2cm stain. Is this reasonable? where do i stand?
    any input will be appreciated.
    thanks
    ali

    • Hi Ali,

      Thanks for your comment.

      The main thing that will be looked at during the conciliation process is the original ingoing condition report. The most black and white question would be “Was the stain there prior to the tenant moving in? If so, is it a result of fair wear and tear or did the tenant cause the damage?” In our prior experience with a situation like this, a stain on the carpet has been classified as damage and a tenant is required to fix it. However as fair wear and tear is always a grey area because each person perceives it differently, the outcome may be different in your case. When you reach the conciliation process the conciliator will look at the facts from both sides. It may be worth telling them exactly how the stain occurred and if you tried to clean it at the time.

      Is the landlord claiming $360 for cleaning the carpet or for replacing that section of the carpet? If they pursue it, you should be able to get your own quote and hopefully find a cheaper one.

      We’d be interested in hearing how the conciliation process goes.

      I hope this helps.

      Regards,
      Vanessa

  • ali says:

    Hi VAnessa
    thanks for that input. I am going into the conciliation process confident and hopeful that the conciliator will be fair. Thanks again.
    ali

  • Cheryl says:

    Hi,
    What about an office chair leaving a faded area around the where the chair has been…think the top of the pile has come off?? Is that considered wear and tear?
    Thanks.

    • Hi Cheryl,

      Thanks for your comment.

      In your situation, we’d suggest this is wear and tear. Simply because this sort of thing happens over time rather than happening instantly. Accidental damage generally comes from misuse of something or may happen instantly eg. someone breaking a knob on an oven.

      We trust this helps.

      Regards,
      Vanessa

      • Stuart says:

        Hi,
        Im renting a place with floorboards and i have a computer chair that has been wheeled around a the living area.the lacquer in a small area around the size of half a 5 dollar bill has started to peel off. The agent is claiming accidental damage but i think its fair wear and tear. Your opinion is appreciated

        • Bec Reid says:

          Hi Stuart, thanks for your question. In this case, it sounds like it is excessive wear and tear which in this case shouldn’t be put onto the landlord. Hence we understand why the agent is claiming it as accidental damage. We hope this gives some insight and all the best with the situation. Bec Reid

  • ali says:

    Hi all
    the outcome of my conciliation process(carpet stain) was:they wanted $300 compensation for small carpet stain – I disputed the amount on the grounds that they did not inform me within 3working days of vacating the property of any claims…I was made aware of the claim 19days after moving out! Legally the agent/owner is obliged to inform you within 3working days of any claim…I agreed to $100 only.They accepted.Dispute resolved. Moral of the story: hand in notice on the vacate day, don’t trust sweet talk of agents to buy time (they’re not on your side), stand your man and don’t give in too easily….but more importantly: try and buy your own place!
    Thanks for all the input.
    cheers
    ali

  • Natalie says:

    Hi, my questions is: eg. a knob has been broken off a oven. Yes, you would no doubt say that it is accidental damage, but do you take into account the age of the stove and the condition the knob was in? Another example, an old bathroom/shower with a sliding door, the door glass was bumped with a knee while existing and it has a hairline crack. Under normal circumstances, this shouldn’t of happened as this glass should be tempered. But, my opinion is that the bathroom is old and the glass is not as strong as it should be. Would the tenant have to replace the whole glass? Thanks

  • Kate says:

    I have a glass shower screen that is fixed to the wall & fits flush to the top of the bath. It only opens & closes as far as the bath, so only opens inward. After a shower I leave it slightly ajar so mould doesn’t creep in on the seal. 2 days ago I went to close the shower door & it came off in my hands. I noticed that the pivot at the top appeared to be perished & has cracked in two hence the door falling off. My agency claim it is accidental damage, I dispute this as no force was placed upon the door, I wasn’t doing anything out of the ordinary & it didn’t occur as the result if me mis treating the door. Where do I stand? She wants a second opinion from their handyman & wanted to come in to the property whilst I was at work to show him. I have requested to be at the property too, which is tomorrow, so any reply would be appreciated! Thanks

    • Hi Kate,

      Apologies for not replying sooner.

      We would suggest that this is wear and tear as it would have deteriorated over time. Unless you placed significant force on the door, we wouldn’t consider this damage.

      What was the outcome from the second opinion?

      Regards,
      Vanessa

  • Wayne says:

    Hi,
    We have an agency managed rental property with a tenancy that recently ended. A final inspection revealed that we were not happy with the state of some fairly new carpet that was stained with dog urine and ultimately had to be replaced. We subsequently discovered that the agent regarded the staining as fair wear and tear and had in fact authorised refund of the tenant’s bond before we had carried out our final inspection and compared noted with the original condition report. We believ the agent was negligent in this regard and should be financially liable for the replacement of the carpet. They of course disagree. I guess the clear question revolves around an interpretation of whether dog urine staining on carpet is fair wear and tear?. Your opinion would be appreciated.

    • Hi Wayne,

      Thanks for your comment. Apologies for the delay in replying.

      Did you approve the dog to live in the premises? If the stain was caused by the dog urinating on the carpet it would be considered as damage, not fair wear and tear. The tenant should have at least had the carpet steam cleaned.

      I agree, the agent did not act in your best interest in this situation. They should have recognised that the dog caused the damage and insisted the tenant rectify it. With fairly new carpet, carpet companies can often match the carpet and just replace a small area.

      Vanessa

  • rebecca says:

    Hi, My rental property has hanging vertical blinds throughout the house, I have had them proffesionaly steam cleaned and have bough the top plastic hangers to re hang them all as the sun has damaged them over years. The problem is each time you open or close the blinds at least one blind falls off, is this fair wear and tear as they are cleaned and in working condition ? also there are tinted windows in the bedroom there is a 5cm scratch in the tint, I believe it was there before we moved in but its not on the condition report is this fair wear and tear? Thanks in advance for your advice !

    • Hi Rebecca,

      Thanks for your comment.

      In this case, our opinion is that it would be considered as fair wear and tear. Blinds especially are used constantly during tenancies and the problem you have mentioned is common for hanging vertical blinds. We suggest you mention it to your property manager as it is a repair the owner may consider.

      I hope this helps.

      Vanessa

  • Heidi says:

    Hi,
    I have just moved out of a house. The agent has done the final inspection and has found the property to be in satisfactory condition, there were a couple of areas not cleaned to satisifaction, though they can see there has been an attempt to clean, such as the lounge window tracks and some marks on the A/C. Only a few minor issues nothing major and she has noted a few wear n tear areas.
    The owner has then inspected the property as well and has come back stating that the scuff marks in the main bedroom are damage and not wear n tear as the rental manager has stated and the owner has said the kitchen cupboards are not clean , but the manager found nothing wrong and the kitchen exhaust fan, which has been cleaned and it is visible that it has been cleaned but does still have residue in the corners.
    The owner wants a professional cleaner to clean the property and for the floorboards throughout the whole house to be sanded back and revarnished. Not just the small area that has been scuffed. When taking pictures of the area it is hardly visible. She wants me to pay for all of this.
    The R/E mamager has stated that they work for the owner and must follow her wishes even though they didn’t have the same findings or request any of this to be done.
    I have taken all reasonable care to maintain the property and have always kept it, (maintained/repaired any damage) in good/satisfactory condition.

    Where do I stand and what are my rights as a tenant?

    Thank you

    • Hi Heidi,

      Thanks for your comment. Sorry we took so long to come back to you. Hopefully you have solved the situation now. We’d be interested in knowing the resolution.

      This is a tough one though and we have heard of tenants finding themselves in this situation.

      Did you take the matter to tribunal? This would have been our recommendation.

      Vanessa

  • catherine says:

    Hi,i have a few questions we just vacated a property after give 28 days notice we were not under a lease at this time…. i have paid up to the 28 days and the real estate agent has charged us an extra 2 days not sure if that is the correct way of doing it? also when we moved in we had 2 cracked pains of glass on the entrance door and one day the wind picked up and blew the door shut breaking those 2 pains we replaced all pains with wood to save it happening again..are we up for the cost? and the water for some reason was still in landlords name if we knew this we would have had it changed but was only notified after over a year of living there and the bill had gone up due to a water leak on the property which we let the agent know are we up for full cost of all water used including due to the leak of just normal domestic usage ?we are in victoria..

    thank you
    Catherine

    • Hi Catherine,

      Thanks for your comment.

      You mentioned you are in Victoria. Our agency is situated in NSW and I am not familiar with whether the laws in VIC are similar to NSW. My recommendation would be for you call your local Tenancy advice hotline and seek some advice from them.

      I hope you get it sorted.

      Vanessa

  • Lily says:

    Hi there,
    I am gonna move out from the apartment in two days. I have few questions.
    1. Does the landlord has to send the bond to the bond centre in Wellington?
    2. The medicine cabinet mirror came off it’s hinges when I was using it. It was loose before I moved in. Is that included in “fair wear and tear”? Or will I have to pay for it.
    3. There is rabbit urine on the carpet. I have asked cleaners to clean it, however there are a stains in a small area. Can the landlord charge me for it or is legally allowed to use up the bond to replace the whole carpet?
    4. There have been small tears in the carpet in different areas in the apartment. I have had them fixed with patches. The patches are the same colour but by eye it looks a different colour due to sunlight and wear. Also since it has been patched up you can clearly see it. Can the landlord charge me/use bond to get the whole carpet in apartment fixed if he/she decides to?

    Thanks for your time
    Lily

    • Hi Lily,

      Thanks for your comment.

      Where are you located? Laws can be different in different states/countries.

      With relation to the medicine cabinet, our opinion would be that it is considered as fair wear and tear. Did your report that it came off the hinges as soon as it happened?

      Carpet is a bit of a grey area because of its depreciated value – do you know how old the carpet is? You may need to patch the carpet where the rabbit urine is also because that is considered damage in our opinion.

      Vanessa

  • kylie says:

    Hi, my partner and I are renting a brand new property. We have been here for two years now. Due to the house being brand new, the condition reports states no faults, damage etc. We are not leaving this property, however have an inspection coming up and I have noticed stains in bedroom carpet from coffee and my daughter has dropped something on carpet which has discoloured it. Obviously this is accidental damage. I have booked carpet cleaners to attempt to remove these stains, however I am concerned that if I cant get them out, when we do decide to vacate we will be responsible for the carpet… Should I mention the stains to PM on inspection day? Is any staining ‘accidental damage’ or is it also dependant on how long you are in a property and age of carpet? I am very concerned as I previously was taken to tribunal over staining in a property and I dont want to risk being black listed as a result of carpet stains. Also we have tiles and there is on very small chip (from a mug falling) in kitchen, and a bottle of perfume dropped in bathroom and has chipped a tile also, both very small and not sharp – but I am also concerned that I will be responsible for this too….. I take good care of my property, keep it clean, maintain it, but it is difficult to completely prevent any accidental damage especially with kids. I have pets and they are not allowed in house to ensure no damage, but yet, it seems it is inevitable over time…. if I replace the stains with patches, can they still take me to tribunal even if I have repaired the stain? Any advice would be great.. I have been told I should never have applied for a brand new house as they can get me for everything…

    • Hi Kylie,

      Thanks for your comment.

      Great idea to get the carpets cleaned but we would recommend you mention it to your property manager and ask for their advice. Because the carpet was brand new when you moved in, some of the things you have mentioned could be considered accidental damage and it would be up to the owner how they are repaired.

      Try the carpet cleaners before patching. If it comes down to patching, if the carpet is only 2 years old you should be able to get it matched quite closely. If this happens, it is our opinion that they shouldn’t need to take you to tribunal however it is best you discuss this with your property manager.

      With the tiles, is it possible to match the tile and replace them? Again our opinion is that this would be considered as accidental damage.

      In relation to being black listed, you will only be black listed with tenancy databases if an order is given from the tribunal. If you are open to discussing the issues with your property manager up front and willing to rectify the issues I can’t see any reason for them to have to take you to tribunal. An application for tribunal is only really made when an agreement can’t be reached between the owner and tenant .

      I hope this helps.

      Regards,
      Vanessa

  • Sarah says:

    Hi,

    My Name is Sarah and I have been in my current property for 4 months and a 3 month inspection occured. My Agent wrote us a breach in our contract because office chairs had flattend the carpet over time. Is this fair wear and tear? I just dont see it being a breach as our bed is also on wheels aswell as our office desk. any info would be much appreciated

  • Kathy says:

    We rent a 5 bedroom house and will be vacating very soon as the owner wants to move back in to the house.

    Now the owner is a very nasty woman very antisocial to the point of being rude when accompanying the agent on inspections.

    My question is this..
    The stove top is built into the bench and made of glass.. Recently I noticed that the glass is cracked from one side to the other.. I am being totally honest here in saying that we are not aware of when this happened or how it happened.. we do assume it has happened recently.. but none of the adults who use the stove can understand how it may have become cracked. We do wonder if age plays a part or not.. I thought it would be an easy job to find a second hand replacement and that would be that but alas it looks like it is going to cost in the vicinity of $400

    What do you think?, could it be claimed on her insurance or could it come under wear and tear, as it was not deliberately done by us.. not that the owner will believe that.

    cheers

    • Hi Kathy,

      Thanks for your comment. We have a few different thoughts on this:

      If the damage was caused through settlement of the building then it is the owner’s responsibility. You would probably need a builder or handyman to assess that.

      The other thing to ask is whether the installer used the correct method of installation. This would dependend on how old the cook top is as well.

      The owner could claim it on building/contents insurance and then you pay the excess. The owner would have to agree to claiming it on their insurance though. The other insurance option is if the owner has landlord protection insurance they could claim it on accidental damage and then you offer to pay the excess.

      We hope this helps!

      Regards,
      Vanessa

  • Shirley says:

    Hi,

    I recently vacated a unit and had professional bond cleaners clean the unit at the end of my tenancy. I had lived in the unit for 4 years. The grout between the bathroom tiles had gotten stained over the years. The bathroom did not have an exhaust fan and only had a small opening above the window for moisture to escape. On doing the final inspection, the realestate agent told me that the bathroom had not been satisfactorily cleaned, and that there were still water marks. I had to have the cleaners return to do further cleaning. However, the realestate agent still insisted that the bathroom was not clean enough. She told me that she was going to get other professional cleaners (her husband carries on a bond cleaning business) and that I would have to foot the bill. The professional cleaners had given us a 7 day guarantee to return and clean the unit. This guarantee had not expired when the realestate agent suggested she was going to call in other professional cleaners. Is the staining of the grout considered fair wear and tear? Would I be responsible for the additional cleaning costs if the realestate agent calls on other cleaners when the bond cleaning guarantee period has not expired?

    Thanks.

    Shirley

    • Hi Shirley,

      Thanks for your comment.

      Once a tenant returns keys, they are delivering up possession of the property with a view that all is in order. There is no obligation of an owner/agent to allow the return of the original cleaners or give the tenant
      the opportunity to remedy the concern. This would be good business practice but not legislation here in NSW.

      Should the owner/agent feel additional cleaning is required they can arrange and on-charge the tenant. If the tenant disputes this I would say to avoid paying the additional cleaning account the matter would need to go before the CTTT or an agreement reached in respects to costs incurred.

      As you had organised professional cleaners and they did return, it would be the onus of the agent to prove that the staining of grout was not general fair wear and tear. As you were there for 4yrs I would recommend that you challenge the agent on why this was not brought up on any routine inspections during the tenancy.

      We hope this helps.

      Vanessa

  • Brandon says:

    Hello, had tenants for 10 months in newly renovated apartment they left leaving us with yellow smoke stained walls due to them smoking in the apartment – we knew that they were smoking and told them not to do so . They chipped the corner of a glass wall light as they stuck frames around it using some kind of double sided tape – they caused damaged to a kitchen unit door that is a dent and a coffee table left with 3 cigarette burn marks and a glass wall frame being replaced by them with a plastic one. In my view I should charge them for all the above to be replaced . what do you think ?

    • Hi Brandon,

      Thanks for your comment.

      It appears that all of the items you have listed are considered as accidental damage. Do you have a property manager or agent that deals with your property for you?

      Vanessa

  • Shane@78 says:

    Good evening,
    My wife and I have lived in our rental property for close to 12 months. We have been asked to vacate as the owner wants to move back in. We have timber floor boards that have showed indentations in particular around the dining table area from the chairs where people have sat on them. We have a no shoes policy in the house however I am concerned by the amount of small indentations that have appeared in our 12 month lease here. We have been advised that we will be responsible to have the floor replaced entirely at our cost. I have had independent flooring specialists come and look at the floor and they have advised that it is a very sort flooring and prone to indentation. I am concerned as we are moving out in 2 weeks as to the outcome and wonder if I should lodge a dispute with the tenancy tribunal. My wife and I feel like we are walking on egg shells all the time in the house due to the issue with the floors. My wife and i consider ourselves and great tenants and have never uncounted this dilemma before. Any assistance would be appreciated

    Shane

    • Hi Shane,

      Thanks for your comment.

      In our opinion, the onus is on the tenant to ensure that all furnishings have protective coverings and to ensure any flooring will not be damaged, whilst it is appreciated that different types of wood flooring may be less hard wearing than others and it could be said the agent for all intensive purposes should’ve taken note of the flooring during inspection/marked down and maybe even recommended a solution i.e. rug so the tenants had the opportunity to address and take steps to prevent further damage. Damage to flooring is not deemed as ‘wear & tear’. The problem that you may encounter is that you may be unable to only sand and recoat one section, the full floor may need doing. As you have stated you have a no shoe policy and maintain the property to a high standard and the markings are from furniture, you have already admitted liability even if accidental. A few options could be considered to reach resolution:

      * Claim made by owner under LLP insurance or building insurance as accidental damage, tenant to pay excess
      * Agree to repairs and negotiate 2/3 payment of repairs, whereas, the tenant pays 2/3 and the agent pay 1/3 for not reporting on the condition of the flooring correctly
      * Agree to pay compensation to the owner, using above method and repairs completed at a later date
      * Dispute any claim against the bond and present their case to the CTTT and hope that a fair decision is made

      We trust this helps.

      Vanessa

  • Kim says:

    Hi, I am a landlord, and at our last inspection we noticed that my tenants have allowed a fish tank to leak water onto our floorboards – creating quite a bit of water damage. Our property manager advises us that our tenants needs to be given the right to rectify this issue themselves. I don’t want to allow this as I am concerned about the quality of the work done and the fact that it could cause more damage or won’t fix all the damage. Do I need to give my tenants the option to repair this damage themselves?
    Thanks,
    Kim

    • Hi Kim,

      Thanks for your comment.

      Yes you do need to give the tenants the opportunity to repair it, however an option is:
      – Get the tenant to seek a quote to repair the floorboards
      – You seek a quote to repair the floorboards
      – The tenant pays you the amount of the lesser quote and you get the job done by your preferred contractor.

      I trust this helps.

      Vanessa

  • Cherie says:

    Hi there,

    We are soon to vacate our rental property after 5 years of living there and had a couple questions.
    Firstly, there are two cracked tiles – from reading your previous posts, it sounds like we are liable for this – how much are they likely to charge us? Is there anything we can do ie filler?
    Secondly, when we moved in, there were 3 or 4 half dead plants in the front yard. With water restrictions and a lack of water/sunlight (they are under cover), they, and some of the grass has died. We planted new grass, however there are now no plants in that area – do we need to replace them and do we need to mulch the area?
    There is also a large tree in the neighbour’s yard that drops seed pods in our yard – despite asking for a green bin, none was provided and the council says we cannot leave them in the normal bin – the owner has previously (illegally?) thrown them into other people’s property – do we need to remove them prior to leaving?
    We also have blinds which are a little bit creased from items occasionally leaning against them – is this wear and tear or damage? There are probably 3 individual metal pieces which are ever so slightly bent.
    Lastly, when we moved in, the place was not clean such as the toilet and we made note of this in the condition report– are we required to clean the items which were not satisfactory when we moved in?

    Thanks,
    Cherie

  • Cherie says:

    Just a quick update – the agent called and asked whether we could vacate a day ealier – the 27th instead of the 28th, and she would carry out the final inspection on the evening of the 27th as she has two applicants looking to move in on the 28th. Should we hand back the keys earlier? Will this give us a bit more leniency on the faults mentioned previously?

    Thanks,
    Cherie

    • Hi Cherie,

      Apologies for the delayed response – How did the situation pan out?

      If you moved out a day earlier you should have only needed to pay rent up to and including the 27th. However, this would be dealt separately to the condition of the property.

      Vanessa

  • Anthony Lorch says:

    Hi Guys,

    My tenant is getting ready to vacate my property and there is a small crack on the glass panel on the stovetop. The crack is not really close to any hotplate and does not appear to be affecting functioning. How would you play it? Order the tenant to replace the entire glass panel or just let it slide?

    Cheers
    Anthony

    • Hi Anthony,

      Thanks for your comment.

      Does the tenant know how the glass panel was cracked? It is likely to be accidental damage because glass stovetops don’t generally crack due to wear and tear.

      A few options could be:

      * Claim made by owner under landlord’s insurance or building insurance as accidental damage, tenant to pay excess
      * Agree to repair it or replace just the glass and negotiate split payment between owner/tenant
      * Agree for tenant to pay compensation to owner, but not repair or replace the stovetop until a later date when it breaks down
      * Dispute any claim against the bond and present their case to the CTTT and hope that a fair decision is made

      Vanessa

  • Febe says:

    Hi,

    I have been reading some of the above posts about carpet and was hoping for a little clarification.

    We moved in to our house just under 3 years ago, and the carpet was new when we moved in.

    I stained a small patch in my room with hair dye – will not come out with professional cleaning. It is a brown drop about 5mm in diameter on grey carpet. Can the landlord charge me to replace the carpet in the whole room (which is about 4m x 4m)? There is spare carpet, can I insist they just cut and replace the patch?

    Thanks,
    Febe

    • Hi Febe,

      We have had a similar issue where the tenant has replaced the patch of carpet rather than the whole room and the landlord was satisfied with the repair. It is recommended that you discuss your plans with the agent so they are aware of the situation and not surprised at such time you move out.

      Hope this helps,
      Vanessa

  • Tom says:

    Hi
    My wife and I have recently vacated from a 9 month lease. Our landlord through the rental agency is claiming new carpets from the 2nd bedroom which we used as an office. There is a circular ring where the office swivel chair has worn the carpet flat. It is not the kind of flat that your bed leaves but more of the structure of the carpet being flattened. Is this fair wear and tear? Should we give up the $500 for the new carpet?
    Any help would be great.
    Regards

    • Hi Tom,

      It sounds like fair wear and tear because it has happened over time.

      A few points to consider:
      * Was there any damage to that area of carpet before you moved in?
      * Did you have a plastic protector on the carpet?
      * How old is the carpet? If the carpet is older than 5 years the CTTT consider it to be of nil value due to depreciation.

      Vanessa

      • James Hanney says:

        Hi Vanessa,
        I read with interest your comment “If the carpet is older than 5 years the CTTT consider it to be of nil value due to depreciation”. I rent an apartment in Queensland, what is the situation in Queensland, the carpet is 7-8 years old. I f you don’t know where can I find such information?
        Thank you
        James

  • Tom says:

    Hi Vanessa

    Thanks for the reply. The carpet was considered in the condition report to be “as new” so I assume it would be under 5 years old as the owner renovated it lived in it for about 12 months then rented it out. No we didn’t use a plastic protector.In all honesty I didn’t even realise you could buy them, nor did I think it would leave such a mark, it never did on any other carpet we used it on.

    Regards

    • Hi Tom,

      If the carpet was considered to be “as new” then you would be required to leave it in the original condition minus reasonable fair wear and tear. Of course the term ‘reasonable’ varies from person to person.

      If you do not feel you are responsible to pay the full $500, see if you can come to an agreement to pay a portion of it based on the fact that it is wear and tear of the carpet.

      Hope this has helped you.
      Vanessa

  • Tom says:

    Thanks Vanessa for your advise

  • Cherie says:

    Hi Vanessa,

    It is still ongoing! The agent told me I could go and fix anything which was not satisfactory given I handed the keys in early, but it would have to be before 5pm as that is when the new tenants would pick up the keys. She did the inspection that morning and said she would email me with any issues. She emailed me at 2pm with the list.The list she sent mentioned 2 chipped tiles, shower scum (actually discolouration due to the type of plexiglass used – which was also mentioned on the original condition report), dust on the end of the blinds, discolouration of the toilet seat (through wear and tear the plastic started to go funny), small dents in the laundry wall where the washing machine had been, and small stain in the walk in robe. I kept trying to ask whether I could come and pick up the keys and get a handyman to fix/get the cleaners back – she ignored my calls, emails and messages.
    She finally answered my call and said I should see if the handyman could make it that night and the new tenant would be there from 5pm waiting for us (easter thursday), I got confirmation he could make it at 6pm – so I tried to call back to confirm that this would clear the issue with the bond and that this would be alright with the new tenant. She ignored all my calls. I didn’t want to waste money if nobody would be home or if this wouldn’t fix the issue with the bond, so I went around to the property to clean the blinds and attempt to clean the shower again. I met the new tenant who told me not to bother – she would rather clean it herself – and asked where the handyman was. She agreed to be home for him another time and I left.
    To date the agent has not replied to any of my text messages or emails or phone calls! Today it has been 10 business days since we vacated and no idea what is happening!
    Any ideas?

    • Hi Cherie,

      I would suggest initiating the bond refund yourself. Not sure where you are located but I know where we are in NSW the tenant can send the bond claim form to the bond board directly requesting for the bond to be refunded. This then sends a letter to the agent to say the tenant has claimed their bond back and if they have a dispute they have 14 days to lodge it with the CTTT. 10 days is a long time without any contact or discussion about the bond.

      Vanessa

  • Ash says:

    Hi Vanessa, just a quick question. I have been staying in a new apartment for 4 years and during my final inspection, it was noted that there was two indention mark on the carpet caused by the sofa. You reckon it is consider as wear and tear or damage because the PM wanted to get it repair and is in the process of getting the quote. Everything else was perfect as I have been taking good care of the property.

    Cheers,
    Ash

    • Hi Ash,

      In our opinion this would be considered wear & tear. What is your property manager’s reasoning to consider it damaged? What sort of quote have they received for a resolution for repair?

      Are there other furniture indentations that they are not claiming? Why just where the sofa is?

      Vanessa

  • Swan says:

    Hi Vanessa,

    My tenant recently broken one of the bedroom glasses door. They claimed the door is “wear & tear” therefore the glasses were shattered when they closing it. When I saw the photo, I found the damage was at the corner of the glasses door. It is more like an accident than “wear & tear”. I spoke to my agent, and he informed me that no matter “wear & tear” or “accidental damage”, it is landlord’s responsibility to repair the damage area. He also said that if I do not repair the damage area, the tenant may also want claim medical expenses if injury takes place. I always thought interior damage caused by the tenant was tenant’s responsibility. Can you shed some light on this issue?

    Thanks and Regards

    Swan

    • Hi Swan,

      It does sound like it was an accident and happened as a result of opening and closing the door, perhaps over a period of time. In this situation, it may be difficult to prove that the tenant is at fault because the glass could have been coming loose or being compromised over a period of time before it totally shattered. If the tenant caused malicious damage to it, then yes it would be their responsibility to replace it.

      I hope this helps,
      Vanessa

  • Tracey says:

    Hi Vanessa,
    I am in the process of moving out of a private rental. When I moved one of the beds I noticed to stains on the carpet. I don’t know what they are or how they got there. The carpets are going to be professionaly steam cleaned I am just concerned if they don’t come out if this is considered damage by me that I will have to pay for. They are about 4 – 5 cm round.

    Thanks Tracey.

    • Hi Tracey,

      Was there a condition report completed before you moved into the property? Do you have any proof that it was there when you moved in? If so, then it could be just considered fair wear and tear or pre-existing. If it wasn’t there when you moved in and it doesn’t come out after steam cleaning, discuss it with your landlord. If they want you to fix it, there are companies who replace small patches of carpet.

      Hope this is helpful to you.
      Vanessa

  • Tracey says:

    Hi Vanessa,
    Thanks for the previous advice, the stain came out of the carpet. I have since moved and the final inspection went well the owner was pleased and she signed my return for bond form and said she would submit it. They did not bring the condition report for sign off so I wrote some comments on my own copy when I went home. However, 3 weeks later I still did not have my bond so I rang the bond board and they said it had not been submitted. I emailed the owner she emailed back stating that since the final inspection they has some issues. All the issues were very trivial and quite frankly un-true. Can she now contest my bond? I am in the ACT. I have submitted the form myself without her signature.
    Thanks Tracey

    • Hi Tracey,

      I’m not sure what the laws are in ACT in relation to length of time after vacating a property, but you did the right thing by sending the form in yourself as it should speed up getting your bond rather than waiting for the owner.

      Vanessa

  • emma says:

    I own a unit which I refurbished many years ago. The carpet is older than 5 years. My tenant of 3 years is moving out in a week and has just informed me that whilst ironing, she dropped the iron on the carpet which has burnt it and left a bur mark the size of a big iron on it. The tenant at my suggestion has called in a carpet person to see if they could repair the carpet. They said they can’t and I don’t have any pieces of that carpet.
    Can I insist that the tenant pays for the costs of replacing the carpet in the entire room? Even this will not be a solution as the carpet is the same throughout the unit so that even recarpeting the room affected, will then not match the other rooms.
    Any suggestions, please?

    I read in one of your answers that if the carpet is more than 5 years old the CTTT gives it nil value. Does this mean I cannot claim any compensation/repair from my tenants?

  • Lane says:

    Hi Vanessa, My daughter & a friend just moved out of a rental they had for 2 years. Both hand basins in the bathrooms are pourus and have been slightly stained by makeup. The property is at least 15 yrs old. The agent has told them to remove stains but as the plastic basins have no shine left it is impossible. Would this not be wear and tear, are the girls responsible for replacing basins? (they paid a professional cleaner to do vacate clean), so stains won’t come off.

    • Hi Lane,

      If it was the makeup that caused the damage, it could be perceived as accidental damage. If they don’t feel they are responsible to pay the full replacement of the basin, see if they can come to an agreement to pay a portion of it.

      Hope this helps.

      Vanessa

  • Sharon says:

    Hi Venessa,

    The house has a laminated kitchen benchtop. A couple of bits of the lamination has come off around the corner, about the size of a tumb around 5-10mm. I was wondering if this would be consider wear and tear.

    Thanks
    Sharon

    • Hi Sharon,

      Do you know how the lamination came off around the corner? Was it caused by something dropping on it? If you don’t know how it happened, then we would assume that it was either wear and tear or accidental damage. If something hit it and it is accidental damage, then the tenant and landlord could come to an agreement to each pay a portion for it to be fixed.

      Vanessa

  • Sharon says:

    Hi Venessa,

    I am not sure how it happened. I was at the rental property the other day conducting home open as my current tenant is vacating the property today. I will be doing the final inspection with the tenant and not sure if I should bring it up as a accidental damage or wear and tear. And if it is accidental damage how to I charge them? I will probably have to replace the lamination for the whole bench but they only made a few damage.

    Please advice.

    Thanks
    Sharon

    • Hi Sharon,

      If you decide to replace the full bench, compare the cost of the full bench to how much of it was damaged by the tenant. You may decide that 50% is their responsibility, or even 25%.

      Vanessa

  • Kirsty says:

    Hi I’m in a rental property and the floorboards have buckled and come up in a few places,were unaware of how this happened, will we be required to pay the cost?

  • Carmel says:

    Hi Vanessa,
    I’ve been renting an older renovated house for the last 2 years.
    In one of the rooms castors from furniture have left several patches of dents (not very deep) where the castors were. All heavy furniture had carpet squares laid under so as to avoid damage to the floorboards but this didn’t prevent the denting.
    The agent has told me that this is not wear and tear – with no further explanation but others have told me it is.
    Is this wear and tear or are we liable for the repair of the floor?

    • Hi Carmel,

      In our opinion this would be accidental damage and would be the tenant’s responsibility to fix it.

      Have the agents given you an indication of what they want you to do to fix it?

      Vanessa

  • Carmel says:

    Hi Vanessa,
    They want full compensation for the re-finishing of the room aprox $650

  • Michael says:

    Hi Vanessa,

    I’m vacating a rental property after 6 years and the landlord wants me to pay for the replacements of the plastic blinds. Some of the corners have been bend as this is where you open the windows. I would say this damage is caused by normal wear and tear, or does he have a case? If he does have a case, I’m I only liable for the remaining life of the blinds (say the total life is 10 years, so I would ony have to pay 4/10 of it)?

    • Hi Michael,

      If no accidental damage or malicious damage has been caused to the blinds, then it is most likely fair wear and tear. IF the landlord can prove the damage was your fault, then the value of the blinds would most likely be depreciated down to 4/10th of their replacement price as they only have 4 years left of “life” according to most Tribunal’s.

      Vanessa

  • sharon says:

    Hi Vanessa,
    I just moved out of a rental house….landlord is wanting to charge me for a new steel front door because of some dents on the inside of it..Should I have to pay the price for a new door when the door on the house is over 10 years old. Please help

    • Hi Sharon,

      It depends on what caused the damage. If it is malicious damage, yes the tenant would be responsible to pay for a new door. If it is accidental damage then it would need to be negotiated. If there is clear evidence that it is wear and tear then it may not be the tenant’s responsibility.

      Vanessa

  • sharon says:

    just moved out of a rental property, landlord is wanting to charge me to replace steel front door because of several small dents. should I have to pay full price for a door that is over 10 years old on a house

    • Hi Sharon,

      Do you know how the dents appeared on the door? It would depend on whether the dents were caused by damage or wear and tear and it’s difficult to determine this without knowing how the dents appeared.

      Vanessa

  • Rebecca says:

    Hi Vanessa,

    We’ve just moved out of a rental in QLD after 6 months. The house had fairly new looking carpet downstairs that showed sign of fluffing (small patched where the carpet looked pull/tugged at by something, leaving slightly fluffy patches) around the door way and walk areas. When we moved out last month we discovered that our reclining chair had made a new area of “fluffing” carpet.

    Because of ex-housemate issues we had to lodge the bond claim before final inspection (we returned the keys and exit report on the last day of our lease) so by the time our real estate agent got back to us about the carpet our dispute over the bond with the ex housemates had already begun so our agent has filed a dispute with the RTA against us for payment from the bond (we’re currently having issues about being over-charged for rent that will probably need to be sorted in small claims court too, so we’ve been advised to no longer talk to her and just wait until the RTA gets involved.)

    Our issue is that when she photographed it, she also took photo’s of the prior wear on the carpet I mentioned earlier and is claiming we did it. Will this effect her claim? Does she even have a claim (Can it be seen as normal wear and tear)?

    Thanks,
    Rebecca

    • Hi Rebecca,

      Assuming there is photographic evidence of the condition of the carpet before you moved in, it would be a good idea to compare the photos to the original photos to prove you didn’t cause all the fluffing to the carpet.

      Vanessa

  • Eric says:

    Hello, I am renting in Ontario and am renting the basement of an apartment. There is cheap rug installed and there are little pieces of rug that get loose all the time. ONe day iwas vacuuming and the vacuum caught a piece of rug and pulled like a 12 foot piece of rug out in a second. Now i have a huge streak running down about 2 feet from the wall. I am wondering if I should be worried about this or if this is considered accidental damage as I totally had no control and was just trying to vacuum and stay clean. I also took pictures of the carpet tangeld up in my vacuum the moment it happened.

  • nikita says:

    Hi Vanessa
    As a tenant, I accidentally burned a small area of carpet with a curling iron. I repaired the patch of carpet, however the landlord still noticed, and now expects me to pay to have the whole room recarpeted. This seems very unfair. I’m happy to pay for a professional to repair the carpet patch, but he is demanding that I pay for the entire room. Is he allowed to demand this, or is it unreasonable?
    Thanks
    Nikita

    • Hi Nikita,

      An option could be to negotiate with the owner that you will pay for a professional repair and if he wants to get the whole room carpeted, he can pay the balance of new carpet. In our opinion a professional repair would be sufficient (provided they can easily match the carpet).

      Vanessa

  • Marika says:

    Hi there
    I have recently moved out if a rental. The owners had floorboards in this house.
    There were some dents from furniture legs ( 2-3 cm in length)
    And then a few random slightly deeper than surface scratches. The owner has had a quote for $900 to fix it. It’s not vis able to the eye unless your close!
    Surely I don’t need to pay this? I offered part payment but it was rejected.

    • Hi Marika,

      It would depend if the floor boards were freshly sanded & polished before you moved in.

      We suggest getting a second quote, as you should be given the opportunity to rectify it yourself. You don’t necessarily need to use the owner’s preferred tradesperson.

      Vanessa

  • Alana says:

    Hi Vanessa.
    We have just moved out of a property and the agent is saying we have damaged the following
    – hot pot accidentally put on laminate surface which has now bubbled agent has advised we are responsible for the cost to replace the whole bench laminate
    – front door had no door stopper on the wall and the door jam has made a dent in the wall agent is saying we are liable for the repair of this
    – wallpaper in kitchen has discoloration and stains – I believe this is from general cooking conditions in the kitchen – agent says we have to pay cost for this to be replaced
    Can you advise if we are liable for these costs ?
    Thanks

    • Hi Alana,

      Bench top: If the section of the laminate can’t be repaired or replaced, then there is a high likelihood that you would need to pay for a full replacement.
      Front door: In our opinion there is a fine line between damage and wear and tear because there was no door stop. Perhaps you could negotiate to pay half?
      Kitchen wallpaper: To determine liability, it would depend on the age of the wallpaper and how badly stained it is. Without seeing the extent of the discoloration and stains, it is hard to give you an answer.

      Vanessa

  • Daya says:

    Hi Vanessa,

    We have just moved out of a prental property that had worn carpet when we moved in. When we left, we had the carpet professionally cleaned and provided a receipt when we handed in the keys.

    The inspection was done by the PM 5 days later and she stated that there was a stain on the carpet the owner wasnt happy with and we needed to have the carpet recleaned.

    We went to the place and found a stain that wasnt there when we moved out. Still got the carpet recleaned but the stain didnt fully come out. While we were there, we found out that the owner had gone through the house several times with tradies before the final inspection was carried out and had already gotten quotes to have the carpet replaced before the final inspection.

    What are our rights, since this is feeling like a scam from the owner to have us pay for her wanting new carpet.

    Daya

    • Hi Daya,

      It is our opinion that when the owner of a property enters the property and commences instructing trades people to do work at the property, the owner has taken possession back of the property. If no one had entered the property to start making improvements, then the owner has the option to dispute the carpet.

      Hope this helps,
      Vanessa

  • Michael H says:

    Good day Vanessa,

    We live in QLD and have just vacated a house after 8 years. There are a number of issues that were raised in the exit report. (3 pages) most to do with minor cleaning which I have done. The main issues come from scuff marks on the walls, discoloration/stains in the varnish of some metal blinds, bug marks on the ceiling (we have tried to clean but the paint is coming off as we rub), de-limination of the carpet in one of the bedrooms, holes in the rubber backing of the curtains, and the old oil/dirt stain on the garage floor. Question is, Is this all a reason to hold our bond??

    • Hi Michael,

      In our opinion, some of these items would be considered as fair wear and tear, but it’d be important to discuss these with your agent and compare the property to the ingoing condition report.

  • Alex T says:

    Hi Vanessa,

    I recently moved out of a brand new apartment in which I lived for 12 months. After the final inspection there were a few issues raised. No.1 All lights were cleaned except for the Balcony light $80. No.2 On the apartment door there is a mark that has taken off the top layer of paint probably 2cm x 4cm $242. No.3. The corking in the shower calcium build up and the sealant had a slight tinge of pink in it $320 for replacement. No.4. The plastic soap holder on the shower pole was cracked, $240 for a new shower pole/ head (it was one of the detachable shower house ones). Anyway being a 21 year old guy I decided that I would refuse to pay the $882 out of a $2500 bond. Anyway know i’m off to VCAT next week.

    What’s your opinion on the following claims by the Landlord/ Agent?

    • Hi Alex,

      That is a considerable amount of money! The key point here is did the agent give you an opportunity to return to the property to rectify the issues before getting a professional to do it and charging you?

      Vanessa

  • Vikas Bhu says:

    Hi Vanessa,

    We are planing to move out from our current property and we renting that house from last 7 years. I use to be with agent then landloard decided manage property by himself. Now, situation is absolutly no damage on the property just normal wear and tear. Garden is looking way better than we moved in. I took care of the property very well. I paid my rent alway 5 to 10 days before the due date. Now landloard id giving bad refrances to my applications because he doen’t want me to move ASAP. How do I sort out this problem. I am also worried about the bond. There is no visit done by landloard or agent in last 3 years. I had several issues with properties when I moved in. Like bathroom is moulded no exaust fan in the kitchen for 5 years. He fixed this issues after 2 years but temporarly. I got no idea what to do. Any suggestion how to deal with this situation.

    • Hi Vikas,

      Thanks for your comment. I see two challenges in your situation.

      I would recommend you prove to a new agent that you can pay your rent on time (show them a ledger) and that you have sufficient funds to continue paying the rent (bank statement). With relation to the condition of the property, can you give the previous agent’s details to the new agent? It may be a long time ago but they could still be able to give you a reference? Tell the new agent that the property is now managed by the owner themselves and they don’t want you to leave but you need to for whatever your reason is. They may then understand the reasons the owner is giving you a bad reference.

      The bond is a separate issue. The only way to settle a bond dispute if one arises is to compare the condition of the property based on the ingoing inspection report. If you can’t come to an agreement, you can apply to NCAT – NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal, who will assist you in coming to an agreement.

      Hope this helps,
      Vanessa

  • Vikas Bhu says:

    Hi Venessa,

    Thank you very much for your response. I spoke with my old agent and they said if you are facing this situation then they can give referance because I was renting under them for 5.5 years out of 7 years. Now, How VCAT / NCAT will take if there are no inspections done in past 3 years and no repairing done. I have a feeling landloard will try to snatch some money out of that bond. If I say no exausts in the bathroom and kitchen, Windows never opened in the master bedroom living room for first, mould in the bathroom 5.5 years and obviously the paint will go off in that period of time. Do you think he can ask for bond money for these problems or damages (bathroom moulded, livingroom paint is going off which is attached to kitchen, master badroom paint is going off)?

    You already answered my most of my questions but that is the situation with house right now.

    Kind Regards,

    Vikas

    • Hi Vikas,

      VCAT will take into consideration that there have not been any inspections for 3 years, but this is not your fault so the landlord won’t look very good when you tell VCAT that.

      Good luck and let me know how you go.

      Vanessa

  • Meesh says:

    Hi. Our oven handle door has broken off and one of the slot/mounts that the handle end slots into is cracked. Will this be considered wear and tear or damage? Many Thanks

    • Hi Meesh,

      We would consider this as fair wear and tear. If you are still living in the property, we’d recommend you report it to your agent as soon as possible and they should arrive it to be repaired.

      Vanessa

  • Manisha says:

    Hi Vanessa,

    Our carpets were pure wool and looked virtually brand new even though they are 10 years old. The tenant has caused pulls and tears to the carpet, we think from a pet. It is estimated to cost us 3000 dollars to replace as it can’t be patched especially up the stairs. How much would it be fair to ask our tenant for to fix the damage.

    Thanks,
    Manisha

    • Hi Manisha,

      Thanks for your comment.

      Our experience at Tribunal has been that carpet 10 years and older is depreciated to almost a nil value so without specific evidence it may be difficult to claim from the tenant. We’d recommend discussing the cost with the tenant and see if they agree that they caused the damage. If they do, then negotiate an amount that both parties are happy with. You could start at the total replacement cost and negotiate down to a mutually agreeable amount, however if the tenant disagrees and does not want to pay any money it’s important to bear in mind that if it ended up in Tribunal there may not be a strong case due to the age of the carpet.

      Vanessa

  • michelle says:

    hi
    we have had to move out after 1 year. there are a couple of very large outside tiles chipped on the edge – they are not cracked or damaged otherwise. the chips are not large. The owners want to replace 5 no. tiles in full and charge us half the replacment cost. (the owner built and tiled the house himself btw!) – it is wise to dispute this/ We dont know how it happened, hadn’t noticed the chips (and had reported all other damage etc. during our 12 months there very proactively. The chips were not notified to us at the final vacate inspection, but were brought to our attentino afterwards after the owners had been invited round independently for their own inspection. any chance you can reply today??

  • susan says:

    Hi Vanessa ,

    A small area of our bedroom wall came off when we were moving our bed. As the bed’s head ismade of leader it got a bit stuck and pulled a bit of the paint the size of a tennis ball. We did some patch work using the original wall paint. The color of the patch work however was slightly lighter and our landloard was not happy about it and wants us to paint the whole wall. Do you think we should be paying for that?

    Thanks,
    Susan

  • Sasha says:

    hi,
    i accidentally let an iron fall when it was on and now there’s a mark on the carpet. how much do you think ill have to pay???

    Please help

    • Hi Sasha,

      I can’t give you a price on this, because it will depend on how much of the carpet needs replacing. We recommend you contact a carpet repair person and they can give you a more accurate price.

      Vanessa

  • Vin says:

    Hi,
    We’ve recently moved out of what was a brand new 2 bedroom apartment. I handed the keys back on 28th March and the agent wasnt happy with colouring on two walls because of where the beds were so i agreed to pay for the two walls to be repainted. The agent was actually handing the keys to a new agent as the landlord doesnt want to keep with who was our landlord. She called me this morning as i was waiting for the bond to be released and said that the new agent had seen chippngs on the ends of the worktop bench – is this wear and tear? Also its now been nearly two weeks since i handed the keys back as building management were dealing wiht the paint work with my agent – am i liable for replacing this work bench or do i have the right to say i dont know where this is from especially as other popele have had access to the apartment. Im also concerned that it was agreed at the end of lease that it was just the two walls that needed doing to which i agreed too. Any help would be much appreciated. Thanks.

    • Hi Vin,

      If you don’t believe you caused the damage to the bench and other people have had access to the property it would be difficult to prove that you had caused the damage. Has a new tenant moved in?

      Vanessa

  • BG says:

    Hi, we moved into a brand new apartment in July last year. Our lease finishes in July this year and we will be moving out. A few weeks back, we impacted the carpet from a bed wetting accident. It wasn’t directly on the carpet as there was a camper mat down but urine went through. Since then we have had professionals out to clean it spending over $500. There is no smell and no stain from the urine but there is a larger patch, than the urine impacted area, that is now lighter from where it has been cleaned. We decided to clean all the carpets to see if this would remove the contrast and although it did somewhat, you can still notice it. Problem is you only notice it under certain light. We have called the professionals out to have another look and they are reluctant to do anything with dye as they could make it darker and given you can only see it under certain light – if you stare at it that is – they think it might be overkill. What I want to know is, given the apartment was brand new when we moved in 12 months ago, could we be hit with replacing the entire carpet because of this patch which is now lighter?

    • Hi BG,

      It really depends on how noticeable it is. They could ask you to replace the carpet in that room or perhaps just a section of the carpet, rather than the whole apartment’s carpet. If you haven’t already, we would recommend you discuss this with your property manager now before it comes time for you to vacate.

      Vanessa

  • Christian says:

    Hi, just moved out of a rental and I’ve been accused of painting a number of items, obviously I didn’t do these. How do I respond to the agent when they try to make me replace a door because I have apparently painted it??

    • Hi Christian,

      You will need evidence to prove that you did not paint it, otherwise it will be your word against the agent’s. Evidence can include photos, video and the property condition report which forms part of your tenancy agreement. If you don’t have any photos, ask the agent if they have photos to prove their belief that you did paint it.

      Hope this helps,
      Vanessa

  • kylie says:

    Hi
    I have moved out of my rental that I was in just 4 days short of 6 yrs,my property manager did her final inspection had rang me to tell me that the timber blinds needed replacing as they were not in working order also the owner then when into the house after the property manager and had his workmen there and then i get told that the laundry trough has a crack in there and water was flooding out something i failed to noticed the week before when i was cleaning the house. I also have a witness that who there Cleaning the carpets again (as property manager said they weren’t up to her standards) as he states the the trough didn’t have crack in ( he is writing a stat dec saying that there wasn’t a crack in the trough) and that was 4 days after i handed the keys in.

    • Hi Kylie,

      Thanks for your comment.

      Were the blinds working during the tenancy? If not, had you notified your property manager that they were not working properly? Unless there is evidence that you caused damage to the blinds, it could be considered as fair wear & tear particularly if the blinds were there before you lived there for 6 years.

      Normal use of a laundry trough would not generally cause a crack and the fact that trades people had been into the property then it could be questioned how the crack got there.

      Vanessa

  • kylie says:

    Also forgot to mention that the laundry trough was plastic and was not even attached to the wall f I r the whole of my tenancy.
    I been told that the owner is going to buy a new trough and new timber blind and owner will pay a portion toward the cost.i asked for photos of the trough but was told none were taken. Are these cost fair or should i objected to them

  • Kylie says:

    Hi Vanessa,
    The blinds were in the property when I moved in, when we moved in. The plastic that were attached to the rods was broken, but I was told by the property manager that the whole blinds in 3 rooms needed replacing and that I was up for some of this cost as she stated that when I moved in all the blinds worked. As I said I have a stat dec from the carpet cleaner stating that when he was in the property (4 days after I handed the keys in) that he saw no crack. What can I say to my property manager when I get given the final bond chargers. Also how many days do I have to wait until I receive the paperwork for the release of my bond as I haven’t as yet.

    • Hi Kylie,

      If you don’t receive your paperwork within 14 days you can apply to the bond board yourself requesting your bond be released. The bond board will then notify the agent that you have claimed the bond.

      Vanessa

  • Karyn says:

    Hi,
    I have moved out of a rental property. The kitchen bench is bamboo (not sealed)and there are two small marks where a bottle has leaked onto the bench. I have tried unsuccessfully to remove the marks which are barely visible. Is this fair wear and tear?
    If not would I be responsible for having the whole bench replaced ?
    Thanks
    Karyn

    • Hi Karen,

      We would consider this to be damage. However it’s unlikely that you’d be responsible to pay for the whole bench. We recommend offering an amount as compensation rather than paying for the replacement.

      Vanessa

  • sharni says:

    Hi I just got my final inspection list of things that need to be done. and one of them was chips in some of the tiles in the kitchen there wee already a few throught the house which is noted in the property conditions report and a few more have come up since we have been there would this be classed as wear and tear? also the lawns have patches in them and the real estate said it needs to be re instated to the original condition it was given to us? what are your thoughts?

    • Hi Sharni,

      It is possible that the tiles have become chipped due to wear and tear, particularly if there were some chips already when you moved in. However it depends on the nature of the chips.

      The lawn would definitely need to be reinstated to the original condition.

      Vanessa

  • Vanessa says:

    Hello from one Vanessa to another, we have recently vacated a property that was brand new when we moved in. We have been renting it for just over 4 years. There were stains on 2 carpets and some scrapes and marks on the walls. The landlord wants us to pay $1500 for half the cost of replacing the carpets and repainting the walls. Is this fair? How are decisions made by the tribunal if we decide to contest? Thank you in advance

    • Hi Vanessa,

      From our experience, tribunal makes decisions based on the depreciated value of the fixture & fitting. They would take into consideration the age and how much the carpet and paint has depreciated over the 4 years that you lived in the property.

      Things to consider when negotiating compensation: Was the carpet in reasonable condition minus fair wair & tear everywhere except the two stains? How big were the stains? Is the landlord painting all walls or just the walls that were damaged? We recommend you negotiate a price that both parties are happy with that covers replacement of carpet where the damage was and painting the damaged walls. Because fair wear & tear needs to be taken into consideration, it is unlikely that you would be liable to pay half-share of the cost to replace the whole property’s carpet and a full re-paint unless the damage you are referring to was throughout the property.

      I hope this helps,
      Vanessa

  • kevin says:

    Hi i just finished living in a house for 2 years and in the kitchen the splash back has a normal mirror there which crack due to heat they are trying to say that it was our fault and we need to replace it please help

  • Michelle says:

    Hi, I’ve had some posters attached to my wall with tape. I know this was a bad idea and yes I’ll be more careful in the future 🙂 I’ve left a chip of paint about the size of a 5c piece on my cupboard door. The cupboard is painted the same colour as the rest of the room. In addition, although there are no other chips on the cupboard, the door is in poor condition, doesn’t have a handle, and is coming off at the hinges. Realistically the owner would probably replace the cupboard doors in future before bothering to paint them again. There are also lots of other marks on the walls that weren’t caused by me. My solution is to attempt to colour match the paint and offer to paint either the spot I left or paint the whole cupboard, but no more of the room. I would let the landlord choose the colour before proceeding. Is this a reasonable solution?

    • Hi Michelle,

      It is reasonable to offer to paint the spot on the cupboard. You shouldn’t be responsible to paint the whole room if the damage was not caused by you. You should only have to rectify damage that happened whilst you lived in the property.

      Vanessa

  • Heidi says:

    the owners of the property we have handed our keys back for are wanting us to repair two very light scratches in a black stone kitchen bench. no longer than 2 cms in length. we didn’t even know they existed. the agent did a final inspection without us present at a time that didn’t suit us and took a photo of it. the owner expects it to be repaired or the whole kitchen bench replaced. this to us is wear and tear on a kitchen bench workplace. no intentional damage was done. what are your thoughts?

    • Hi Heidi,

      It could be considered accidental damage because of the nature of it. How old is the bench top? There are companies that repair stone bench tops and it may be worthwhile asking their advice on whether it can be repaired or not. In our opinion it is not reasonable to expect you to replace the whole bench top if it’s just two small scratches in one spot. Coming to an agreement for compensation may be a better option.

      Vanessa

  • Sue says:

    Hi,
    Just after some advice.
    We currently rent a home with a glass induction cooktop. I accidently knocked the edge with a saucepan and chipped it (small 5mm chip). We advised the landlord as were happy to pay any insurance excess to have this fixed. They have put it back on us telling us the owners insurance won’t cover this and they want it either repaired or cooktop replaced.
    We’ve had to source help with this. We’ve found out a new cooktop of same model will cost $3500 to replace it, or the glass itself will cost $850 approx. to replace.
    We think this is excessive for such a small chip (the cooktop is still in working order).
    Do we have any rights as tenants in this situation?
    Should we be advised if the Owners insurance doesn’t cover certain things so we can make a conscience decision to take out cover ourself if we can, as now we’re in a position of a lot of money to repair accidental damage?
    Any help/advice would be appreciated.
    Thanks

    • Hi Sue,

      This is an interesting question. As it is such a large sum of money, we suggest you discuss this with either the tenancy & advocacy service in your area or the fair trading (or equivalent).

      Vanessa

  • Vanessa says:

    Hi Vanessa, thank you for your advice. We are in dispute with our landlord as we could not agree on an amount we should pay for some minor damage to paint and carpets when we vacated the property. We have both made a claim for refund of bond money and are awaiting the next step. We have actually left Australia and are now living overseas. Will we be able to carry on using email or is there a hearing that one needs to appear in person? Thanks again, Vanessa

    • Hi Vanessa,

      Claiming for refund of bond money is separate to tribunal. If you have claimed the bond, then the agent will receive a notice to say they have 14 days to apply to tribunal otherwise the bond is released. If the agent applies to tribunal then you will receive a notice of hearing. You have to be present at the hearing, however with you being overseas they may agree to you having someone represent you – this would need to be discussed with the tribunal though prior to the hearing.

      Vanessa

  • tia says:

    hi. moved into an old house 5 years ago … we are pretty reasonable and going too be cleaning and leaving the place too my best ability, how ever there is a few chips and etc in my wall and door frames and land lord wants me too paint the whole thing, the door frame is a bit chipped very noticiable but easily fixable but wants me too sand the whole thing off (heaps of layers of paint) and repaint it? Am i obliged too or should i fix it my way and take before and after pictures of everything?

    • Hi Tia,

      You’ll be required to leave the property in the same condition giving consideration to fair wear & tear. If there are parts of the wall and door frames that are chipped, we would recommend you patch them and re-paint.

      Vanessa

  • Wei says:

    Hi Vanessa,

    After 2 years in the property, I have move out and had the whole house cleaned. After the agent and owner had their inspection, they say the whole house is in good condition except for small area on the floor that need repaired which I agree and paid. I have also got the wall painted where there had been scratches. I got a sample of the paint and went to Bunnings to get the paint. Now they are saying that the patches that have been painted look different and have got a professional painter in to quote a repaint which cost $950. I have requested for a detailed quote from the property manager but she say she just had a general quote that doesn’t detailed what needs to be done. Can I dispute this request to pay for a re paint? Thank you.

    Wei

    • Hi Wei,

      Yes you can dispute it, however we recommend you negotiate this with your property manager. If you’re not happy with the outcome, then the best idea is to apply to Tribunal.

      Vanessa

    • Erin says:

      Hello Wei,
      How did you go with your wall painting case? We had very similar issue where landlord wants us to pay $900 for bad patch up work we did ourselves.

  • Monika says:

    Moved into a brand new unit 12 months ago. Owners and agent always appreciated care provided. Upon vacating agent pointed out bench stain. I engaged installers to remove stain but agent was not satisfied with the result and called services of other provider for 5x the initial price… I was informed that my agent tends to organise hideously charging trades, multiple of the market prices. RTA did not work. Now agent calls for QCAT.
    I know I did not do it, it could be faulty stone?
    Stain is not noticeable due to the bench’ s characteristics- like a marble.
    Can fair wear and tear prevail. The bench is not scratch , not chipped , not broken. New tenant already stained it…

  • Shirley says:

    Hi,
    I will be vacating a property after being there for a few years. I have a problem with the white enamel cooktop. When I moved it it was clean & white. Now It has burnt marks around cooking elements. I tried cleaning it without scratching it but it didn’t work. Do you know what I can do? Anyone that you can recommend to help me clean? If not, do I have to pay for a new cooktop from my bond?

    • Hi Shirley,

      Have you tried a product like this? We recommend these products to our tenants for cleaning their cooktops. If that doesn’t work, have you tried getting a professional cooktop cleaner to assess it? You may have a company in your area that specialises in cleaning cooktops.

      Hope this helps,
      Vanessa

  • Kelly says:

    Hi Vanessa.

    We will be moving out of our rental property within the next few weeks, we think the rental agency will pull us up on 3 tiny paint peel from 2 separate walls, measuring about 1.5cm each, but still there is noticeable paint missing, it just happened as we knocked things against the wall over the past year I guess. Are we liable? If we are…
    How is it best to try & fix this now? We don’t know what colour paint has been used, so we just paint a little over the small area that’s missing paint? We don’t want to get stuck with a huge bill to paint the entire wall. What would you abvise?

    Also there is a crack in one of the bedroom doors that is down to us, shall we get it replaced before we do the final inspection? So we try to fix the paint work before the inspection too?

    Thanks

    • Hi Kelly,

      If the sections where the paint is peeling is as a result of knocking things against the wall, yes you would be liable to repair the damage. If you don’t know the exact colour of the paint currently on the wall, if you just paint over a small section it will be quite noticeable. The best way to repair the wall is to patch the cracks with a product like this and then paint the whole wall. If you get a handyman to do this it may be cheaper than a painter and they would also be able to match the colour of the other walls in the room. You may like to discuss this with your property manager and get their recommendation also.

      With relation to the door, can it be repaired or do you need to replace the door?

      Repairing these items before your final inspection may speed up the process of having your bond returned, however we do recommend discussing this with your property manager.

      Hope this helps,
      Vanessa

  • jacquie says:

    Ive recently vacated a property and the real estate agent has contacted me stating that there are chips in the bath and a chip on the bathroom basin. I never used the bath except for the plastic washing basket and as for the basin i noticed the chip in the top layer about halfway through the tenancy but not sure how it got there, is this just under general wear and tear?

    • Hi Jacquie – It is possible that it could be considered wear & tear, however assuming the bath and basin are porcelain, force would be required to chip it in which case it may be argued as damage. If you didn’t use the bath, do you have any evidence of the chips being in the bath at the beginning of your tenancy? Photographic evidence as well as the condition report notes will be what the condition of the property is compared to ~ Vanessa.

  • Phil says:

    Hi the timber frames and carpet around the bathroom entrance are damaged caused by the leakage from the showers. Since the shower booth has no door on it and literally is right next to the entrance, residual water along the surface eventually wets the frames and the carpet just outside the bathroom. Because of this I have installed a curtain and a bathmat but still doesn’t help much. Please consider the following factors:
    1. I made formal writing with a condition photo of the damaged area as soon as I found this out to the agent and made them aware. However they replied that this is a common issue in the whole apartment therefore nothing could be done about it at that present time (So here they pretty much accepts the inevitable nature of the issue I believe?). This took place early this year and the condition pretty much stays the same now or a bit worse as the parts are continuously getting damaged but slowly.
    2. Despite the very efforts made (installing the curtain and bathmat with my own cost, and informing the agent whatever necessary for further action taken if needed) I believe this is a structural dampness that caused the damage and the essential nature of having the shower which inevitably made the leak leading to the damage would not constitute a negligent nor irresponsible act from my perspective.
    Considering these factors would I be made responsible for the costs to get this fixed? Just recently an agent came over and had this looked and took some photos of it. A little worried now…Kind advice would be very appreciated.

    • Hi Phil – In reading your description of the issue, it sounds like the damage is being caused as a result of the design of the shower. In our opinion this would be considered a repair & maintenance item. It is good that you have reported it and we would recommend you continue to dialogue with your property manager if the issue worsens.

  • Sarah says:

    Hi Vanessa

    We have just moved out of a property after 3 years. The kitchen was newly fitted before we moved in. The agent is now asking that the grout in the floor tiles be restore to it’s original colour. Ie the same as the patch under the fridge where there has been no use. Is this a reasonable request?

    Thanks

    • Hi Sarah,

      With all situations, fair wear & tear has to be considered. Some people’s perception of ‘fair’ can differ also. Is the discolouration significant? Can it be cleaned again by a professional to a satisfactory colour? It is unlikely after 3 years that it can be restored to original colour as kitchens are high traffic areas but perhaps a professional could get it close.

      Vanessa

      Vanessa

  • Heidi says:

    Hi there, I have just moved out of a property that had ‘timber’ floor covering (floating floor not proper hardwood floors). I lived in the property for 12 months and there are some marks on the floor where my lounge and bed were sitting. No excessive scratches, just indent marks from the furniture sitting on the floor. Is this considered wear and tear? I had placed squares of cardboard under my lounge to avoid marks but they still occurred. To me this was fairly unavoidable damage however the realestate are asking for compensation. What are your thoughts? Also we put a small dent in the garage door, how should I work out how much compensation to offer? Thank you

    • Hi Heidi – In our opinion this is considered accidental damage. We had a similar case with floating floor boards and the landlord and tenant came to an agreement for the tenant to pay compensation for the damage. With the garage door, you could find out the cost to replace the door then consider the amount of damage and come up with an agreeable figure. Vanessa

  • Stewart says:

    We are just about to move out of a property which had old paintwork which was cracked and flaking in places. I accidently made the decision to place a removeable decal that we had used in our last property without issues, however this time it has pulled off a patch of the cracking paint.
    It is our responsibility to fix this considering it was by accident and the pain was bad?

    • Hi Stewart – In our opinion this would be accidental damage however we recommend you discuss this with your property manager as the condition of the paintwork may be taken into consideration. Rather than paint the whole wall, you may be able to offer compensation. Vanessa

  • Amanda says:

    Hi there,

    Just wondering if there is any specific legislation stating how often the carpets should be replaced in a rental or a time frame for when they would devalue down to $0.00. Are we within our rights to ask the real estate when the carpets were last replaced?

    Kind Regards,

    Amanda

    • Hi Amanda, there is no specific legislation and we have experienced that each tribunal member has a different perception as to the time frame. You can certainly ask your property manager when the carpets were replaced but if you have any concern as to whether there is a claim or not we recommend you discuss this with your property manager.

      Vanessa

  • Nathan says:

    Hi Vanessa
    ive just moved out of a place after 2 1/2 years and now the RS wants money for cleaning oven that i agree to, but its the other things like cleaning cupboard doors (they wont show proof), cleaning broken aircons (broken my whole tendency, still wont show proof) and damage to softwood floorboards (slight dots from a carpet protector that pushed spikes through the rug i had to protect the floor, the damage is nothing to the massive wear and tare to the rest of the floors and i did grind the spikes down, the dots are less then the rest of the floor damage wise).
    now i mostly just want things dropped so i haven’t said anything but i was thinking of claiming rent for the broken aircons that they claim they work, i can prove they dont if i can get in there and test them and record it. i dont want to threaten (lack of a better word) with this, they broke allot of promises about fixing the place up.

    we are at a standstill now, should i warn them that ill claim rent back ($10/wk for ea AC and the $10/wk rent rise (they didn’t fulfill their end of the rise) and $10/wk for a room they said they would carpet but decided not to after i moved in) and hope they back down or take this to the rta?

    • Hi Nathan – I would suggest you meet the property manager at the property to go through the claims as the evidence for or against will be right in front of you. If you are unable to resolve it, then the next step would be to apply to tribunal.

  • Faithe says:

    Hi Vanessa
    My daughter (16years old) was cooking in the oven griller, left the door closed therefore a fire broke out. Luckily it only damaged the oven. The oven is 25 years old if not more. The owners are expecting me to replace the oven with a new oven and cover all costs, the electrician and the handyman. Do I have to pay for this?
    thanks
    Faith

    • Hi Faithe – In our opinion you would be responsible for the damage, however you may be able to negotiate a compensation amount rather than the full amount. We recommend you discuss this with your property manager. Vanessa

  • Shreejana says:

    Hi Venessa,
    I moved into new property 3 weeks ago. it was supposed to be renovated kitchen and it fell off today. I have rang RS & they are in the process of repairing it . All the plates, glasses & bottles i had in the cupboards are broken along with half of my pantry. Can I ask my landlord to pay for the damage??
    Thanks !!

    • Hi Shreejana – we recommend you discuss this with your agent. You may be able to claim some compensation. Alternatively, you could speak to your contents insurer and see if you can put a claim in.

  • Mellissa says:

    Hi, my partner and I are the first tenants to live in this new apartment and after 2years of living here we are now vacating. There are a few marks on the walls where paint has chipped away, easily enough to be fixed however just wanting to know if this is covered as ware & tear as some of which was hard to avoid.. Example: my bangles hitting the door frame when turning off lights (causing paint to chip)

    There is what I would consider accidental damage, as I spilt nail polish on the carpet. Its not obvious, unless pointed out but you can see it. What is my rights as a tenant? Being a new property are they allowed to take out of my bond the full amount to get the carpets replaced.

    Hope you can help shed some light for me..

    Thanks

    • Hi Mellissa – Have you discussed this with your property manager? As the property is 2 years old, it is our opinion that you are responsible for paying some compensation towards the carpet if you damaged it with nail polish. We recommend you discuss this with your property manager as you may be able to come to an agreement with the landlord on a sum of money for this.

      With relation to the chipped paint, it depends on how bad the damage is. In our opinion, bangles hitting the door frame when turning lights off isn’t wear & tear.

      Hope this helps,
      Vanessa

  • Cara says:

    Hi Vanessa

    I’m moving out of an apartment that had new, cream-colored carpet when we moved in.

    We rent directly from the landlord. They are now claiming they will need the whole carpet replaced because after 3 years there is high traffic wear in the the bedroom and study, and 2 small stains (ie coin-sized) in the loungeroom. Their argument is that the carpet was new when we moved in.

    We are prepared to go to tribunal over their claims re the high traffic wear, but we’re unsure if small stains through normal use are wear and tear. We paid for professional carpet cleaners at the end of the lease and it didn’t remove them.

    Are we likely to be responsible for the full cost of replacing the loungeroom carpet?

    • Hi Cara – in our opinion, traffic wear is considered wear & tear no matter how old the carpet is. Stains are considered damage. You could offer compensation for the stains considering how much of the carpet is stained and then the owner can decide whether to replace the carpet or not.

      Hope this helps,
      Vanessa

  • Ian says:

    Hi Vanessa,

    I have been renting this townhouse for 2 years and the townhouse itself probably about 5 years old. I accidentally damage the cooktop glass. I found out that my home and content insurance doesn’t cover fiture and fixtings, and the property manager also said that the landlord insurance also doesn’t cover it as I am willing to pay for the access. I don’t mind paying the cost to replace the cooktop glass. My question is would I be liable to pay the whole cost considering the depreciation of the value of the cooktop?

  • Vijay says:

    Hi Vanessa

    We have been asked to compensate for the benchtop discoluration and to remove oil marks on the garage floor. In terms of discolouration it very mild and its about a pan size. In terms of oil marks, we had marks before we moved in but coz of two years of driving the car over the marks those marks have dirt accumulated on them and look black.

    Are these appropriate requests? How do I find out whats tenants rights?

    • Hi Vijay – Yes the oil marks need to be cleaned. If there were marks at the start, we recommend you clean it to bring it back to the condition as when you moved in.

      With relation to the benchtop, what caused the discolouration? Is it a result of damage or wear & tear?

      Vanessa

  • Chet says:

    Hi, When I moved in I asked the agent/landlord to put up some picture hooks (multiple times). He refused and told me to use a 3M sticky hook. Now I’m vacating – removing the sticky hook has pulled some paint off the wall (about the size of a 50c piece, very noticeable!).

    Will I be expected to pay for this to be fixed – as he is the one who refused to give me a real hook and told me to use the sticky hook???

    Thanks

    • Hi Chet – We recommend you discuss this with your property manager if he recommended you use the 3M hooks. In normal circumstances the tenant would be responsible to fix the damage from any hooks.

  • Yuxuan says:

    Hi, I’m just wondering if the swelling up of the wooden cabinet door underneath the sink in the bathroom (so cracks existed when moved in but only slightly, as time goes by, during the 4 months stay, more and more water is absorbed into the wooden crack and cause the cracks increase in size and the top part of the door swelled up slightly as a result) is wear and tear or damaged that is responsible for tenants to fix (owner said will deduct money from bond). The door is still works fine like normal but not as pretty as before we moved into the place. Does the house owner have the right to ask us to pay for this matter?
    Thank you.

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Yuxuan, thanks for your question. A tenant has the responsibility to report any issue which could cause a landlord extra expense if not repaired. Did you report the moisture leak in the vanity unit and request a repair? If you didn’t you could be held liable. If you did report it and the landlord failed to repair it, then the owner failed to prevent additional damage and is responsible. Bec

  • Jo McGregor says:

    Hi we are vacating a property after 6.5 years. Our property manager is saying we need to pay for small chip on tile it has been there for at least 5 years. The also say I need to have carpets professional cleaned. Is the case. We have had at lest 20 property managers in the 6.5 years and no inspections for the last 18 months.

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Jo, thanks for your question. Have you had pets in the property? If you haven’t there is no legal requirement to have the floor professionally cleaned. Regarding the tile chip, it appears that it was caused by impact damage and you would be responsible. Do you recall how it was caused? On the other hand, if it was caused by bad workmanship you may have a case. Bec

  • Sharon says:

    Hi there,

    We lived in the apartment for 2.5 years. They did renovate before we moved in but not sure the extent of the reno. There are 2 tiny chips on the kitchen tiles from wear and tear and they are asking us to pay $200 towards it from our bond. Does that count as wear and tear as it’s from things being dropped and just serious wear and tear. These cracks are so tiny!

    Sharon

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Sharon, thanks for your question. We assume you are talking about ceramic floor tiles. Chips on tiles sounds like impact damage caused by items falling to the floor. On the other hand, it is possible that the tiles were not laid correctly. We would not be able to comment further due to not knowing more information about the quality of the workmanship or quality of the tiles. Bec

  • Nikita says:

    Hi
    We had a privacy door lock on our bathroom, which now has parts missing and will not lock. Our agent is calming this as wear and tear however the door handle was brand new when leased out 18months ago. Is it fair the handle is replaced at the cost of the Tenant?

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Nikita, thanks for your question. Did you buy the cheapest product available? There are many poor quality and cheap imported locks and handles on the market. It comes down to whether there was some impact damage or just normal usage. This is a difficult one to prove as it would be difficult to know whether a tenant mishandled the usage of the privacy lock. If it went to the Tribunal we would suspect that it would be ruled in favour of the tenant. On the other hand, if you had bought an expensive and good quality privacy lock there should be a warranty. In this case, we recommend you contact the manufacturer or retailer/wholesaler. Any decent manufacturer would stand by their product. A good quality privacy lock should really last 10 years or so. Bec

  • bomi says:

    Hi
    i am getting my rent bond back and agent wants to check cracked tub.
    who’s responsibility for cracked bathtub for repairing
    landlord or tenant???

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Bomi, thanks for your question. This is a question of whether the crack was caused by negligence or wear and tear. How did the crack appear? If there was some impact or some huge weight which caused the crack, then you are responsible and at fault. If it appeared one day without any reason through normal use, it could be considered to be a faulty or poor quality bathtub. Bec

  • shane outram says:

    Hi i recently vacated a house i lived in for 2 yrs on entering the lease agreement i stated clearly that the house walls floor cupboards windows screens shower toilet were not clean and quiet dirty the lawns were not mowed i even recomened in condition report walls needed painting and doors needing fixing , the agent says we did a poor job in cleaning even though it is in better condition now then what it was when i first moved i even hired a lawn mover guy to come do lawns but even that was said to have been done poorly and are trying to charge me $600 for cleaning cost there are cracks in the walls from the house moving and a cracked fixed class panel as a resalt i took photos before i left , the agent sent me pics and there are discrepancies in there pics for instance in there pics the oven isnt clean but our pics show oven clean ,there pics have no time stamps our do ,whats u think

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Shane, thanks for your question. Based on the details you have provided, it appears to us that you do have a case. It is a matter of comparing the Ingoing Report and photography against the Outgoing Report and photography – it is all a question of evidence. You are entitled to claim all your bond providing your evidence is correct. If you are in NSW, you may have to go to the NCAT Tribunal to prove your case. Bec

  • SK says:

    Hello. Not sure if this blog and thread is still active but hoping you can help. I’ve been renting property for over 5 years and planning to move soon. The last inspection was done 2 years ago. The sofa provided (purportedly leather) had started to peel and before the inspection I had put that info in an email to the agent and also pointed it during inspection. I did not get any acknowledgement from the agent that it was issue so assumed that it was not a problem. There have no inspections since then (other than a property valuation one which was done on short notice and when I wasn’t present). The sofa has continued to feel and crack over the past 2 years even though I have been careful while using it. I have hardly sat on the sofa in the last 1.5 years. In my view the peeling and cracking is fair wear and tear, but have not found anything in the NSW Act that discusses furniture. I was wondering if in in your experience you have had to deal with wear and tear in furnished apartments and would the sofa be fair wear and tear? Thank you.

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi SK, this appears to be fair wear and tear. The sofa is probably made out of fake leather and we suggest you document the wear and tear by photographing the sofa and email the photos to the agent. The agent is required to inspect the property at least once a year for the landlord. Any possible claim by the landlord would have to be documented by an invoice of the sofa. It appears to us that the sofa could actually be quite old and therefore we don’t believe the landlord could have any claim at all due to normal depreciation. We hope this helps, Bec

  • Jodie says:

    Hi,
    I have two small children and they have put dents in one of the bedrooms with their toys. Our lease ends soon and this is the only thing I am really worried about as I have been a perfect tenant apart from this problem. I am worried if I tell the real estate it will affect my good record. So my question is should I try and fix this myself before the end of the lease or tell the real estate and have their Maitenance people fix it?

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Jodie,
      Thanks for your question.
      We recommend you repair the damage prior to the final inspection. We are sure your real estate agent would be willing to recommend a painter. However you may prefer to research a name of a local painter instead and have them do the work providing the wall is returned to original condition. We don’t see a reason why you would need to report it. Bec

  • Levinia Seca says:

    I can see this post is still monitored.
    I have rented this property since 2004, just over 12years.
    The property was built in 1999; built using cheap as fittings etc in all areas of the duplex.
    A situation has occurred when the hand held shower has accidentally fallen, after a shower, and onto the ceramic soap holder tile causing the soap holder to smash in half (rendering it un-repairable).
    The R/E advised “this was not any fault/neglect of the owner this will have to be fixed at your cost”.
    I would understand that if it were malicious damage, but it was a genuine accident. The soap holder was becoming porous, at 17+ years since manufacture date.
    If it were a 40-50year old ceramic soap holder and a razor was accidentally dropped on it, breaking it, would the tenant have to pay for the cost of repair given its age.

    A guestimate cost has been indicated at around $140 for R/R of the soap holder.

    Is the tenant responsible for the cost of repair in this case ?
    Considering I have been a great long-term tenant and never had any issues with routine property inspections, with the exception of one gas stove hob ring.

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Levinia, thanks for your question. This is considered to be accidental damage by the tenant and as such, in our opinion, would be a tenant liability. Unless, there is someway of proving that theceramic soap holder had suffered normal wear and tear. We just can’t see a way you could prove this. We hope this helps, Bec

      • Leviniaa Seco says:

        Thanks Bec
        I have priced a soap holder similar to the original one for $20. That said, $120 seems alot for labour for essentially a half hour repair job including adhesives/grout.
        I don’t see how I could prove the result of the shower rose falling and hitting the soap holder causing it to break as wear and tear.

        Damn, I should have kept the broken pieces to show the glossiness of the ceramic had faded/crazed. That may have shown significant wear and tear.

        Thanks for the reply.

        • Bec Reid says:

          You are welcome Leviniaa. Remember with tradespeople, there is always a minimum they charge even if it is a 15-30min job. All the best, Bec Reid

  • Rebecca says:

    Hi
    I am currently renting an apartment (not looking to move out anytime soon) but noticed 2 cracked tiles in the kitchen (there is an impact mark and believe it was someone that house sat for me )which my property manager advised me I would have to get fixed, which I understand. I have done this but the new grout is a slightly different colour from the original grout and there is a small nick in a nearby tile from the tiler removing cracked tiles. Is this going to be an issue for me when the time comes that I move out?

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Rebecca, thanks for your question. It really depends on how close the new grout is to the old grout and the size of the nick on the original tile. We recommend you get your property manager to inspect and write a letter (or email) to you as to whether they will accept the current condition of the tiling. A letter will give you peace of mind. You would then file this letter and show it to the person who does the final inspection after you eventually move out. We hope this helps, Bec

  • cody says:

    Hi there im hoping you can help
    Im currently renting a place and have been in it for over 12 months
    Theres been no deliberate damage done to the place but over time paint has flaked off the edges (corners) of the walls leaving missing paint
    Also i have put up baby gates to prevent my 1 year old leaving the room with out my supervision as babys have a habbit of moving so fast and you cant always have your eyes on them i have taken down the gates todays to clean up a food spill and noticed a small amoumt of paint had come off with it no holes just a flake of paint roughly 2 cm long is this classed as wear and tear or am i liable to repaint the house .also ive had it come to my attention that i should of taken photos when moving in and i hadnt the same as the owner (landlord ) a few things where put into a condition report but no photos where taken by him a few things have come noticable to me like faint stains that wernt done by me on the carpet you can only see in certain light how would i go about defending myself as a Tennant without previous proof

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Cody, Thanks for your question. You and your landlord will have to rely 100% on the Condition Report as neither you nor your landlord have any photos. The Condition Report is your proof and is accepted at Tribunal hearings. Peeling paint sounds like fair wear and tear. Depending on the quality of the paint and the workmanship it would be fairly normal for paint to peal after some years if conditions are moist such is in bathrooms, kitchens and laundry’s. In other rooms, peeling paint is a reflection on poor quality paintwork. As far as your baby gates are concerned, the flaking could be considered to be damage. However, since paint is flaking all over the house, you could easily claim that it is poor workmanship, unless it is obvious by the shape of the mark from the baby gate. We hope this helps, Bec Reid

  • Edwina says:

    Hoping you can help.

    We have recently had tenants vacate a property (yesterday). When we asked the agent today when the inspection would be completed, they told us it was already done and they had signed the bond release forms. They did not contact us prior to doing this, and did not provide the inspection report, can this be done?

    There are two badly cracked sliding doors at the property, which the agent claims are not the tenants responsibility. Apparently there were two small stone chips on the doors at commencement of the tenancy. We were not aware of this, and we’re not provided photos.

    Is the agent required to consult us regarding final inspection? The property has recently been sold through another agent, and we have found them very difficult to deal with recently.

    We have had previous issues with the agent/tenant asking us to pay for accidental damage.

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Edwina, thanks for your comments and questions.

      Firstly, the Agent does not have to contact you to accompany them to do this final inspection. However, if your agency agreement had a special condition specifying that you would be notified of all final inspections, then you would be covered. In our own Real Estate practice, we always offer a Landlord the opportunity to accompany our Property Managers when they do inspections. If you can provide evidence that the agent was negligent in their assessment that the bond could be released, then you may have a case to take the Agent to the Tribunal and claim any loss or damages against the Agent.

      Secondly, regarding the cracked doors, it would most likely be the sign of damage rather than wear and tear. This could be either malicious or accidental. I would be surprised if an agent could prove that it resulted from a couple of chips. Suggest you talk to a Glazier or Building Inspector. Did the Agent mark the ingoing inspection report as such? If not, there is no proof that it was chipped at all.

      Thirdly were the doors cracked at the time the Buyer inspected the property prior to exchange of contracts? If so, ask your Solicitor whether you are obliged to rectify the damaged doors. Please understand that this advice is general as we have not inspected this property. We hope this helps, Bec Reid

  • Matt says:

    Hi, glad Im not alone one this.
    I have recently vacated a property, there was some damage to a wall that had been fixed, however the colour match paint dried a little dark. We used the same paint over picture hook holes (which was agreed). I received an email last night stating that the lower floor needs to be completely repainted because of this. The house was only one year old when we moved in, with white walls. We lived there for almost 2 years and maintained the property well. I never went to them when there was damage, I paid for and fixed it myself.
    Landlord is happy to go halves (I need to pay $1000), which I feel is a little unfair as this is purely aesthetic and would only require a touch up with the correct colour paint. Am I within my rights to dispute this?

    • Bec Reid says:

      Thanks for your question Matt. Firstly, how were the walls damaged? For the purpose of this answer, we have assumed that you were the ones who created the damage. If this assumption is incorrect, please advise us as our response will then be different. Aesthetic issues, especially in an almost new home are of high importance to a Landlord as this aspect is one of several characteristics of a property which determine rent or sale value. Hence, tenants have the responsibility to maintain the aesthetic standard of a home subject to fair wear and tear.

      For your information it is next to impossible to match up paints from original paint –if that is what you used. However, if you were to scrape off a small fragment of the existing wall paint and take it to a Paint supplier, the exact colour could be matched. Then the wall would not look ‘patchy’. Did you do this?

      A tenant should be given the opportunity to rectify any damage if a Landlord so requires. If you decided you did not want to go back to do this, then it is important to work out the monetary compensation with the Landlord. However, this should be a fair and reasonable and not some inflated amount. We recently had a professional painter paint and fill approximately 10 cracks in a house which was going onto the market for sale. He charged $616. So, I am not sure why the job would cost $2000. Suggest you find out why. All the best, Bec Reid

  • Rinzin says:

    Hi there,
    I have been living in a one bedroom apartment for over 7 years. My wooden floor ( probably the cheapest wooden floor) has a mark of wear and tear from last 7 years of use. I am planning to stay in my apartment until i buy my own house. The floor makes my apartment look really dirty. Can i ask my landlord to install a new floor? Or am i responsible to change the floor? Please advise. Thank you.

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Rinzin,

      Thanks for your question, but it doesn’t clarify the details about the timber floor. Is it genuine timber? Is it stained or does it have a polyurethane finish? Is it a ‘floating floor’ using a timber veneer or laminate? Was the floor new when you moved in? Generally speaking a tenant would only be responsible to replace a floor should they have damaged it severely by scratching. Your question makes clear that this is not the case and that it is a wear and tear issue. Depending on the timber and the finish, the wear & tear may differ dramatically. A floor should last much longer than 7 years but if the quality of the finish is poor or the material is a cheap one, it may last a lot less. If you have a good relationship with the Landlord and he/she understands that it was of cheap quality, at the time of the next inspection, I suggest you discuss the issue and ask for a solution. If you have a Landlord who likes everything looking good, he may agree. Alternatively, could the floor be sanded or painted? Always discuss situations such as this with your Landlord. We hope this helps, Bec Reid.

  • Patty says:

    Hello 🙂

    I have brought a house a few years ago and just recently i have noticed my vinyl flooring in the bathroom has lifted ( only in the shower part, since the shower part of the bathroom is integrated to the floor ( for wheelchair access i am guessing) all the corners and near the drainage has lifted up also from the walls where it connects to the white paneling for the “shower walls” ,i now also hear a hissing sound in one of the walls here and there….just not all the time. also the other walls seem to be getting wet somehow….. There is nothing wrong with the roof either. Would this be covered by insurance? cheers Patty

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Patty, thanks for your question. It may or may not be covered, you need to speak with your insurance company. Your bathroom should be investigated by a Builder or Bathroom renovator asap. Vinyl flooring is not a suitable floor covering for a bathroom so you may need to renovate the bathroom. Water leaking from the shower will damage your walls. Urgent attention required here. Hope this helps, Bec Reid

  • Tess says:

    Hello, we’re having an issue with our property manager after our final inspection . She is stating that the property is not up to standard when we have literally cleaned it top to bottom . we feel she is being completely unreasonable about it. She is saying she will need to hire someone to get it up to their standard and take it out of our bond . We have had the carpets steam cleaned but she is saying they are still not clean enough?? Also she came to see the property on Tuesday (two days ago) whilst we were there and we handed back in the keys to her office later that day . She has
    Since gone and viewed the property yesterday and someone (possibly herself?) has ripped the screen door off its hinges . Now she saw that this was not damaged when we were there on Tuesday and clearly happened after we had handed back the keys but is still trying to charge us for the damage . Please give
    Me some advice I’m going mad !!

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Tess, this is an excellent question as it shows that both Landlord’s agent and tenant have failed to use the most important reference point there is – the evidence of the ingoing inspection report and photographs.

      We recognise that not all Real Estate Agencies have the same standards when it comes to final inspections. Our own agency is ultra careful! Tenants also have different standards as well. However, it matters not so much on standards but using the ingoing inspection report as well as any photographs as the only reference point to the final condition of the property at the end of the tenancy.

      Go through each point of the ingoing report and objectively look at the condition at the end versus the beginning. Is there damage or is it normal there wear and tear? Is it as clean as it was at the commencement?

      If this matter was to go to a Tribunal, the Member would compare the two reports and make his decision on them and not on the opinions or expectations of either the Agent or the Tenant. In summary, evidence is what counts… not opinions.

      As far as the shower screen is concerned it is difficult for us to express an opinion without seeing a photo of the actual screen. Old screens are usually problematic and some will fall apart on touch. Is it 15 years old or more? The question is whether it is wear and tear or accidental damage. Did it fall off frequently while you were living in the property?

      It is now a matter of you and the landlord (through the agent) coming to an agreement. Make a list of the points where there is disagreement and look at the evidence of the ingoing reports. Only by using the evidence can you prove your points.

      By the way, John Pye Real Estate takes between 350 and 1000 (depending on the size of the property) photographs at the start of every tenancy. Photographs are taken of every square metre as well as all items and equipment. Such evidence is valuable at the end of each tenancy. If in the future, your agent doesn’t do this, you could take your own as a record. We hope this helps.

  • Michelle says:

    Hi there,
    Thank you so much for taking the time to reply to all of us!

    I’m in need of a little advice too please. We are being taken to court for some very small chips in the kitchen bench after vacating. The property manager made us go back and do some extra cleaning that she wasn’t happy with and we were only happy to do so. She gave us a list and we completed it. In an email she asked us to do extra things that weren’t on the list and we as genuine people did them too even though they weren’t o there. We handed the keys back for a second time and she said everything was great after that final inspection together. The next day we recieved an email saying the owners want $200 compensation for the bench. We said said no we do not agree to this and now we are getting taken to court for this amount. Are they allowed to claim for this even though she said everything was great? We handed the keys back 1 week earlier on a Tuesday and the Friday following we had to pick the keys up to complete the list. Monday we returned them and had the final inspection together that day. The next day Tuesday is then when she mentioned the owners want money for the bench even though she stated everything was great.
    The bench is very old and everything is in immaculate condition. She couldn’t fault us for anything as we did everything perfectly for her. The owner now wants to sell the house and then that’s when we got asked for $200. I’m happy to go to court because if I have to pay the $200 so be it but why not fight it. My husband and I are fair people and believe in doing the right by others and ourselves.
    Again thank you and I look forward to any advice you may have 🙂

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Michelle, thanks for your comments and question. Sometimes this does happen where a landlord or agent goes back to the property and discovers some extra item which wasn’t noticed the first time. Of course, the landlord is entitled to do this. Did you damage the bench yourselves or could the bench mark be seen as ‘fair wear and tear’? Do you know how old the bench is? Are you aware of the costs the owner will incur to go to the Tribunal? Perhaps their insurance policy will take care of the costs. However, it seems strange that someone would go to the Tribunal over $200 when the costs would probably exceed that amount. The other issue is the quantum of compensation claimed – the $200. For the landlord to claim this, they have to have some proof of repair costs. Did they show you a quotation for repair? It is not possible to just claim an arbitrary amount at a tribunal without justification. Have you already put your claim in for the bond? A tenant or a landlord (through agent) can send the claim form to the Rental Bond Board. We hope this helps, Bec Reid

  • Beau says:

    Hello, I am so pleased I came across this site and read all the queries & replies. I have rented same house in Qld for nearly 15 years, same owner but he has had the house with 3 different agents over the years. I know everyone says they left their property better than when entered but in my case this is true. The original condition report stated how bad and unkept were the gardens, the bad state of pool equipment, all fly screens had holes or marks, walls and carpets all marked, as were the inside of wardrobes etc. Most windows had shabby or torn curtains and the then real estate agents updated entry condition report to say tenant had installed their own new curtains within 2 days of commencing tenancy. Also stated on condition report house had not been cleaned and charged $150 from previous tenants bond. Now when I try to query with RTA what is deemed as fair wear and tear for such a long tenancy (15 years) they dont have any reasonable answers. I gave 3 weeks notice even though it should only have been 2 weeks. The agent from 2012 to now said to make sure house was clean, pool clean, gardens weeded, remove all curtains and “new” tracks as owner didnt want these. I had house and carpet professionally cleaned and pest control done. Even put a new toilet seat/lid on toilet as the original one seemed too old to leave on. Rent paid up to midnight of 1st and due to hand keys in that afternoon, agent phoned me 3.30pm on Wed 31st Aug to ask when was I going to hand keys in as owner wanted to look thru property before he left to go overseas 2pm on 1st. I said I was bringing keys back about 3pm, she said nicely I didnt have to bring keys back until 5pm as rent was paid up until then and that it was owners problem, he could see house when he gets back. I went back to house on Thurs 1st to do a final check to make sure all was ok and noticed someone had been there as a sign was now over letterbox slot saying “No junk mail etc” but also the “unlocked” chain around the gates was lying on ground. I asked neighbour and he said about 5.30pm being 2 hours after I left the day before a man came to the property (the description fitted the owner who lived 2 streets away). He obviously disobeyed the agent by entering the property without permission and I told her that when I handed keys back at 1.45pm instead of later. She said she would check property next day (Fri) and let me know. She phoned me 4.45pm on Mon to say she just checked and found a few things missed that needed doing and all would be good to release bond. I picked keys up next day and went to house and did the 6 small things she said and took keys back. She said the owner sent her an email and was not happy about 2 palm trees in backyard, this proves he was on the property as by time I handed keys in he was heading overseas. He also stated the inside of house would need repainting and claimed he had put new curtains in house prior to me moving in. The condition report stated totally different to this. I phoned RTA again and they said tree lopping is major and owners responsability. Now the agent has disputed the bond and I am in a deadlock where I am waiting their 3 way phone call but can see this ending up in a tribunal case. It appears the owner is wanting me to pay for this and that so he has a newly painted house to rent out at my cost. There was so much maintenance that need doing as house was deteriorating more over the years and 2nd agent noted much and 3rd agent much more, but 3rd agent was unaware of all the problems prior. Now here is the weird part, if the owner was so unhappy with the way I looked after his house why over the years did he agree to minimal rent increases and no increases in the bond after 2nd year. 1st year $310×4=$1240, 2nd year $320 so $40 extra paid to bond board, now after all these years rent was to go up from $460 to $480 in Oct but mentioned no additional bond required to be paid, still held as $1280.
    I know this is a very long message but just trying to cover the most important stuff. Agent is totally peed off but says she has to represent owner, but where are the tenants rights also as the owner has lied so much. The agent should have signed off on the bond as I did what she requested and she agreed even saying “If I didnt get my bond back, she would eat her hat”. I think she was just trying to put me off until owner got back on 23rd. Now he has gone thru property and picking more faults. I lodged Bond Claim on Mon 5th Sept as advised by RTA. It is now 29th Sept.
    Can you advise my situation re fair wear and tear and bond refund

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Beau, thanks for your question and comments. We are only familiar with NSW laws in tenancy matters. Hence, we are unable to comment on your particular situation. However our wise advice in any dispute is that each party must be able to prove their point of view on the basis of the facts of the matter and the supporting evidence. You can do this on the record of photographs, reports, emails and phone calls and associated notes. As well, you need to know the relevant law and the responsibilities and obligations of both tenants and landlords when it comes to fair wear and tear or damage issues. If you have done all of the above and you are unable to come to a fair settlement, you need an arbitrator to settle the matter at a Tribunal. We hope this helps, Bec Reid

  • Rachel says:

    Hi,

    I am moving out of my rental my daughter and I have lived here for 6 years. I was wondering if you have been in a place longer than 5 years is wear and tear considered likely? With carpets and walls (main areas of concern)

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Rachel, Thanks for your question. Wear and tear will certainly be a factor over a long period of time such as 6 years. Generally carpets last between 10 and 15 years. Painting is generally recommended every 10 to 15 years as well. There is no hard and fast rule. It depends on the quality of the carpet and paint and the number of people living in the property. However, don’t use wear and tear as an excuse for dirt. Be sure to leave the property in a very clean condition. We hope this helps.

  • Shae says:

    Hi there i have been renting the house im currently in for 11months now and the floor boards in the house are so weak you can see under the house. I currently stood on a floor board and my foot went through which also broke the top of my foot is that considered as an accident because now my family are walking on egg shells incase another board brakes can the landlord take that out of our bond money knowing it wasn’t our fault that the floors are not strong enough.

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Shae, Thanks for your question. You have given us a picture that you are living in a house with rotten or white ant ridden floor boards. It appears to us that the property is unsafe and could result in injury. You are not at fault in such a house. You actually need immediate help – you need to immediately ask the Property Manager or owner to inspect the property, and ask that repairs are made to the floor boards so that you have a safe property to live in. If this doesn’t get a response, seek advice from the Dept of Fair Trading or lodge a complaint on Fair Trading’s free tenancy complaint service – Fair Trading’s free tenancy complaint service on http://www.tenants.org.au All the best with your situation, Bec Reid

  • Courtney says:

    Hi!

    We are in the process of completing the exit condition report with our real estate. We have had the apartment cleaned by professional cleaners and the carpets completed. The real estate completed their inspection last week and provided a list of minor things they wished to have corrected. We paid additional money for the bond cleaners to come back out and rectify their issues however there were two issues that could not be rectified. There is a small amount of mould in the silicone in the shower that could not be removed and their are light peach porous tiles in the bathrooms which have discoloured through regular use. The discolouration is incredibly minor and only visible under artificial light. I am concerned that they are no going to request we replace the silicone and they have mentioned arranging for an acid wash of the tiles however when I have researched these appear to be issues caused by the nature of the property. The mould due to the lack of natural ventilation in the room (it is in the centre of the house with a small silent exhaust fan) and the tiles discolouring due to the quality and nature of the tiles selected. Are we liable to pay for what they have requested? Thank you for your advice

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Courteney, This is a difficult question to answer as we do not know the property. I suggest you make your very best case to the Property Manager and point out the limitations in the natural ventilation and your attempt at cleaning. We hope this helps, Bec Reid

  • Kimberley Brown says:

    Hi, we recently vacated a property and have nothing but problems with the Landlord. They did expect the 30 yr old house to be exactly as it was upon us beginning the lease. 4 yrs later we left the property in great condition, so much so that they had a showing less than a week later. When we contacted them regarding the bond they stated a water mark on the bar needs to be fixed. When they were going to say something I don’t know? I don’t remember the water mark happening, I know it was there when we left so we definitely did it. Is this considered wear and tear?

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Kimberley, thanks for your question. It is actually impossible for us to comment on something like this which we can’t actually see. If a bar is a bar where you expect to be drinking alcohol, then why would the bar not be water resistant? Perhaps it is built of the wrong material? Usually a water mark would be damage and not wear and tear. However, I am sure there is always an exception… but I can’t tell whether your situation is the exception. All the best with your situation.

  • Kate says:

    Hi, we recently moved out of a flat after 2 years. When we first moved in – less than a week later – I opened one of the kitchen cupboard doors and it fell off in my hand. The landlord had it repaired at the time, but now we are trying to claim our deposit back he says that we broke it and wants us to pay £135. Surely the hinges must have been worn and this is fair wear and tear? Thanks.

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Kate, we are pleased to know that this post is reaching tenants and landlords in the U.K. Our suggestion about the kitchen cupboard doors falling off is as follows… If a kitchen is professionally installed, no door should fall off in “someones” hand.

      If you were climbing up on the bench and grabbed hold of the door and put undue pressure on it, you have caused accidental damage and you should pay to have it repaired. If it simply fell off into your hand by normal gentle use then there is something wrong with the hinges. They are obviously of very poor quality or were incorrectly fitted or the kitchen is extremely old and it is fair wear and tear. We doubt the latter as we are of the belief that old kitchens had top quality hinges. We also doubt whether it would cost 135 quid for a new hinge… unless your landlord insisted on gold plated hinges. Please understand that we have not inspected this kitchen and are making these comments based on the information supplied. All the best with this situation. Bec Reid

  • Joanne P says:

    Hello
    We have recently vacated a property after 3 years. We had some shelves and hooks on the walls that left some holes that needed patching. We patched and repainted with the paint supplied by the real estate but because it was new paint on old paint they are now expecting us to pay for the walls to be all professionaly painted. Seeing as house was not freshly painted when we moved in I dont think its fair we have to pay for the owners to now have a newly painted house.
    Not sure if its worth fighting though. Some advice would be great.

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Joanne, sorry for the late response and thank you for your question. Our advice to all tenants is don’t use hooks on a wall unless you are prepared to paint the wall at the end of the tenancy. If you do use hooks, always ask the agent/landlord for permission and undertake to paint at the time of vacating the property. It is important to put yourself in the Landlord’s shoes. These days, paint can be matched by the Paint suppliers. Thus don’t use the original paint as it won’t match, but take a small scrape of the current paint to the paint supplier and ask for an exact match. We hope this helps. Bec Reid

  • Graham says:

    Hi,
    We have been renting a 2 bed unit in West Ryde for 6 months approx, on a 12 month lease. One evening my wife was in the kitchen and the cover over the light fixture fell, missing her by about 6 inches, and pieces broke off – it needed to be replaced. We hadn’t replaced the light or touched the fixture for this to happen. The real estate/landlord are now saying that this is our fault and isn’t considered wear and tear, and that we should pay the callout fee for the electrician of $187. I don’t have any photos that the light cover wasn’t correctly fitted prior to the incident, and I don’t think it would be listed on the condition report – though I will check this tonight. Thoughts? we don’t have any proof that we didn’t do this, but we think it’s unfair that we have to pay for the remediation.

    Thanks,

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Graham, thanks for your interesting question! Were you swinging off the light cover? 🙂 It certainly seems like it! If a light cover was to fall off without you doing anything, it is not your problem. We suggest you ask the Property Manager why they are blaming you. Remember, if you don’t get any satisfaction, you can always call the Department Manager or the Principal. It seems odd to me that you would be charged for a cover, unless you were doing gymnastics on the ceiling. Of course, we have not seen the property and can only rely on the comments you have made. All the best, John Pye

      • Graham says:

        Hi Bec,

        Thanks for your reply.

        Well, it isn’t our problem, but we have no proof we didn’t tamper with it. The electrician that attended the call certainly seemed to suggest we were at fault. I checked the new fixture that was installed, it has a screw either side to secure the cover – a change of design suggests there was an issue there to begin with. I think it was the Owner of the real estate I was speaking with – when I called back I got a different Property Manager, and agreed (reluctantly) to pay the $187. I figured the cost and time of getting the court involved would be too much, but I’ll be mindful of your comments in future.

        Thanks,

  • Basil says:

    Hi All,

    A shower screen glass door cracked during our tenancy. We do not know how but know it was accidental. It is the glass with wire in it. Some glaziers are saying it is phased out due to safety concerns, but we have found that it can still be purchased. We reported the damage to the property manager immediately, despite being in our 60 day notice to leave the property. The shower recess had two panels: one being the door and the other the return. The return had a crack in it prior to our entry and is noted on the condition report. We feel that this accidental damage incident has presented an opportunity for the landlord to remodel the bathroom to replace both craked panels creating a brand new shower recess.

    We feel that the age of the shower screen is a contributing factor as well as the crack in the other panel. We wish to argue that the shower screen is original to the construction of the house (being 20-30 years old) and as such has depreciated in value accordingly.

    Further more the property manager sent us the tax invoice where it stated “insurance excess $400”, but there was no proof of the insurance excess from an insurance claim. We are challenging this and going to court in February 2017. The property manager has admitted in the Hearing to the Registrar that the underlying tax invoice from the insurance company does not exist.

    We feel (but can’t prove) that the landlord has made an insurance claim for the entire shower screen glass recess, received the payout and then wants us to pay the excess: therby remodelling the bathroom without paying a cent. We feel there is more being claimed than the accidental damage during our tenancy. When challenged on this, the property manager has produced the glaziers tax invoice (which describes works only for the door), but dated after we filed the court action. He now wants us to pay the $1147.40 instead of the $400 excess. It is clear from the glazier’s tax invoice that the landlord has replaced the shower door glass with a completely diffeent type of safety glass (adding weight to our depreciation argument given he wants it to be replaced with a different glass type than was damaged). If he hasn’t replaced the other glass panel then he now has mismatching glass panels.

    1. Can a landlord ask tenants to pay more than what their insurance excess is?
    2. Can a property manager create a tax invoice for insurance excess in anticipation of receiving documentation from an insurance company?
    3. Have you heard of tenants succeeding in arguing depreciation of an asset that was accidentally damaged?

    • Bec Reid says:

      HI Basil, thanks for your questions and comment. Since you are going to the Tribunal in February, we would love to hear the result and outcome of the hearing. Could you post the result in this comment thread? All assets are depreciated and if the door is 20 to 30 years old and presumably been used several times a day over 20 to 30 years, it would have been opened and closed perhaps 25 thousand times. Seems to be fair wear and tear! We suggest you see if you can substantiate the age of the door and use this as evidence. Accidental damage of an item which has been used perhaps 25 thousand times would be treated differently from an item which has been used only 20 times. If a Landlord claims on Insurance as well as making a full claim against you, it would seem to be a situation of double dipping. Suggest you ask the Landlord for the reason for this. Good luck with it all, Bec Reid

  • Sarah says:

    Hi Bec,

    I moved into a furnished property 12 months ago and there was a near new blanket box in one of the bedrooms. The real estate has told me I am responsible for scratches (minor) to the top of the blanket box (which they believe are caused by my dog living inside). Is this considered fair wear and tear or am I responsible for this. I don’t understand how fair wear and tear applies to furnished properties. (There was no photos of the top of the blanket box in the entry condition report only a comment that it was near new). The scratches are not intentional or deep.

    Thanks,

    Sarah

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Sarah, thanks for your question. Accidental damage and malicious damage are always the responsibility of the Tenant. Wear and Tear is the responsibility of the Landlord. In our opinion all scratches within a 12 month period would be called damage (whether it be accidential or malicious) and not wear & tear. All the very best with your situation. Bec Reid

  • Stacey says:

    Good afternoon Bec – Last week Monday I handed back the keys for a rental property I was in for 4 years. All adequate notice was given all rent paid in advance and a professional cleaner $575 and a commercial carpet cleaner $250 along with some repairs or small holes scratches etc $650 completed by a building contractor etc all completed before I handed back the keys. I contacted the agent 4 times last week regarding my outgoing inspection which they hadn’t completed until Friday last week. They then claimed damages that were on the original condition report and photos so I refused and asked them to review the original report and the property photos for confirmation that these were not my damages. There is a chip on the edge of the laminate bench top immediately infront of the sink that has been present for the last 3 years and has been noted on my periodical inspections. The owner is now insisting I have this laminate bench top repaired at my own expense. Is this wear and tear due to the location of the chip ? Should I dispute at tribunal ?

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Stacey, thanks for your question. You haven’t indicated the size of the chip on the laminate bench-top, and we don’t know how old the bench-top is. If damage is reported on your in-going report, then it was there prior to you moving in. If the damage was not on the in-going inspection report, you could be help responsible. However, extremely minor damage could be considered to be wear & tear, however a big chip/chunk would be considered damage. We suggest you contact the Tenancy Union of NSW with specific information about the chip. All the best with your situation, Bec

  • Sarah P says:

    Hi Bec,

    We have recently vacated a rental property after three years and our agent has come back and asked that we replace the venetian blinds in the bedroom (aluminium I think), as three of the slates are bent at the ends.

    I would consider this fair wear and tear and the blind still works and the damage wasn’t deliberate but was probably the result of us squeezing between the window and the bed.
    Thanks for your help, Sarah.

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Sarah, thanks for your question. On the face of this, we would agree with the agent and understand why they’ve asked you to replace the slats. Is it possible for you just to replace the bent ones only? We understand it was not deliberate, but “damage” covers both deliberate and accidental damage. Wear & Tear would cover such things as the wearing out of cords etc. However, there are some other aspects of the situation you may wish to explore. 1. Age – do you know how old the blinds are or when they were installed? Depending on the age, it is possible that the blinds have served far more than their expected life-span – a quick call to the Tenants Union of NSW or Dept of Fair Trading will give you an answer. 2. Is there any photographic proof to accompany the in-going inspection report, or any notation on the written inspection report? The agent has to provide you with proof that you bent them. We hope this helps, Bec

  • Sarah P says:

    Thanks Bec much appreciated 🙂

  • Alan Hillsley says:

    Hi, my parents rental property has just been vacated and they decided you do an inspection and maintanence before putting in on the market. When they arrived ( they live 6 hours away ) they found holes in walls behind every door, door jambs damaged from the kicking in of doors, tiles in the bathroom floor that are missing the fireplace has all the tiles broken and the hearth tiles broken plus the fire bricks from inside the fireplace are missing. A window frame in one bedroom has been broken and bent and one of the panes has been replaced with perspex. The garden shed which was locked and contained maintenence equipment eg. Paint and spare tiles, carpet for the house has been broken into and everything stolen including the shelving. A section of cornie is missing and there are burn marks on the carpets and a cupboard from the kitchen is missing……The property was/is being managed by a local real estate agent who did not disclose any of this damage, i dont think they even knew. I dont know when the last inspection was. The condition is so bad my parents are considering having to move back into the house in order to fix the damage (they are both retired).
    What action should we take toward the tennent and or real estate and should this be covered by landlords insurance.

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Alan,

      We are so sorry to hear about this disappointing landlord experience. I am sure that it happens many times around Australia every week. I heard about another awful one just this last week. This time the owner was managing the property himself and the tenant disappeared and left damage and huge amounts of rubbish. TICA, a tenancy database claims that there are over 100,000 delinquent tenants in NSW. A reputable Real Estate Agency with a very precise service specification does not allow such things to occur.

      Some questions:

      Do you have a copy of the ingoing inspection report for these tenants? Is there photographic evidence? Our Agency does a written report as well as hundreds of photos. For example a 3 bedroom house may require 1200 photos so that evidence is complete. Every Landlord should ensure that this is done at the start. You are entitled to see this at the start of each tenancy.
      Periodical inspections – Have you received every periodical inspection report? The first should be done after 3 months and then at least six monthly. Some of the properties we manage, receive an inspection every 3 months throughout the history of the property. It all depends on the instructions received. Also, photos should be available for all inspections. Outgoing inspection OR Bond Inspection? Was this done?

      The procedure now is to:-

      Confront the Property Manager of the Real Estate Agency and insist on seeing copies of all the above reports. If all reports are available, and the evidence is that the damage was caused between the last periodical inspection and the outgoing inspection, then the agency has acted professionally. If there is no trail of documentation, the Agency could be negligent and has not acted in accordance with their Agency Agreement. If negligent, I suggest you contact the Department of Fair Trading and discuss the procedure to receive damages from the agency.

      Make sure you document the current condition of the property if the Agency has not done so. Suggest you take photographic evidence as well as comments. This must be done prior to any work in the property. Otherwise you will have no claim. Is the tenant willing to return to repair the damage? Probably not but at least put this question to the Property Manager.

      Claim the Bond – pursue the tenant for the cost of rectification of the damage –providing you have the evidence. If the tenant has disappeared, there is no point in doing this. The Agency should do this on your behalf.

      Select another Agency to take care of the property once all repairs are completed. This time closely monitor their management over the first 12 months at least. It may take a while for your confidence to be restored. If you are going to seek damages from the Agency for not acting according to your Agency Agreement, make sure you have a conversation with the Principal of the Agency outlining the items in the agreement which have been ignored.

      We hope this is helpful and wish you all the best! Bec

  • Marlene says:

    Hi,

    I am a little frustrated over my oven door. Around May/June 2016 I advised my real estate that cracks had started opening in the walls of my rental property and that our oven door spring had broken. I was told to email pictures of the cracks which I did but we never actually got any response until our inspection in September that year. 1 day before the inspection I was unable to catch the oven door before it fell to the floor and shattered, I advised real estate of this as soon as she arrived. The Saturday of the same week, the owners father turned up early and un announced to see oven door. My 11 daughter was the only one up at the time, and told my husband and I after he left that the father swore and told her to tell your parents to get I fixed, $700 you tell them to get it fixed. Is this my responsibility to do even if I had advised real estate of this earlier in the year?

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Marlene, thanks for your question and comments. Firstly, do you have a copy of the email you sent to the agent regarding the oven door? If you can prove that a direct consequence of failure to repair the spring caused the door to fall and glass to shatter, there should be no problem in the owner paying for this repair. In other words, you firstly reported the problem, secondly the real estate agent failed to respond and the door broke as a direct result of the agent not reporting and acting on your behalf. Furthermore, in our own experience several years ago, we had an oven door suddenly smash without warning and the owner took full responsibility for its replacement. You would only be responsible if you caused malicious damage by kicking the glass in, or accidental damage by mishandling the door. If, at all times, you have handled the door with care, you would not be responsible for any damage. We hope this helps, all the best with your situation. Bec Reid

      • Marlene says:

        Hi Bec,

        Thank you so very much! Yes I do have a copy still and have again made contact with the real estate regarding issue. Owner will now be around Saturday to speak with me about this.

        Again thank you

        Marlene

  • Pulkit Malhotra says:

    Hi There

    I have just moved out of a rental unit which had a damaged tile in one of the rooms when I moved in. I had taken photos when I had moved in but somehow missed adding these details to the condition report. Also, the report was sent across after 7 days.

    Now the agent and the landlord are trying to claim the amount for the damaged tile from my bond money. Any help over here would be highly appreciated.

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Pulkit, In NSW the Residential Tenancy Act specifies that a condition report is to be signed by the landlord/agent at the time (or before) the tenancy agreement is signed. You don’t have a valid agreement as you received it 7 days after you signed the tenancy agreement. Once you show the agent your photo and advise them that the condition report is not valid, you have grounds for not contributing to the cost. We hope this helps, Bec Reid

  • Kohia says:

    Hi,

    I have been renting out a room in our workers cottage and whilst there was a change over of tenants I went up and did a thorough clean. On vacuuming the carpet all was okay bar a small burn mark near the tile fire. At this stage there was only 2 backpackers staying on the premises and they stayed a couple of weeks then returned to stay some more. As we had another worker starting I went to the house to move some beds and make up the room with linen etc and I noticed a burn mark near the door on the carpet. When the one of the backpackers left I did an inspection and noticed black marks on the walls and removed $50,00 of their bond to cover washing linen, marks on the wall and the burn mark that neither of them would admit to putting there. I intend to take another $50.00 from the second backpacker when he leaves. Am I in the right or do I have to return all their bond back to them. They signed a contract on moving in that gives an outline of what they have in their room and what is expected when they leave.

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Kohia, thanks for your question. This however is outside of our understanding of the Residential Tenancy Act as your situation does not relate to a Tenancy Agreement on a dwelling/cottage but rather what appears to be a sub-letting or even a boarding type situation. However, we believe you need to rely on the contract which was signed. All the best, Bec Reid

  • Nalan Savut says:

    Hi, I have just moved into a new built rental property. My daughter tripped over the oven door and the glass broke. The oven is next to the fridge (thats where they can only fit) when you open the fridge door you cant see the oven door being opened. Hence why she tripped over the oven door. The glass shattered all over the floor. Is this claimed as an accidental damage? Do I pay to fix the oven door? Please need advice thank you.

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Nalan, Thanks for your question. Sadly it sounds like this is accidental damage and due to this, you will need to pay for it. All the best, Bec Reid

  • Jenna says:

    Hi,
    My family member with 3 children just vacated a house after tenancy of 5.5 years. The landlord claims the carpet was new at that time but I’m unsure if I believe this, certainly didn’t look it. There are 3-4 A4 size stains in the cream wool carpet (impossible to remove stains even if attended to immediately) after professional cleaning and the landlord is looking to take all her bond. We presume they they want to replace the carpet. Is this reasonable after this length of time in the house and with children (unsure if that’s taken into account)?

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Jenna, Thanks for your question. Wear and tear applies to carpet more so than any other part of any property. Over a 5 year period, normal wear and tear would become evident. During this period a landlord would have been able to claim a substantial depreciation for carpet. On the other hand, carpet should last at least 10 years and more depending on its quality. Look at your ingoing report and see what the report says about the carpet. Does it say that it is new at the commencement of the tenancy? If you didn’t question it at the time of signing the Tenancy Agreement, it is too late to question it now. I take it that your family members have stained the carpet and as such the Landlord may be entitled to receive some compensation. The big question is:- “How much is fair and reasonable?” It would be unreasonable to expect you to pay for the full replacement. I suggest you negotiate the amount taking into account depreciation of the carpet and if you think it is unreasonable, take it to the tribunal.

      Also, make sure you get a copy of the photograph showing the carpet with a rule beside the stain showing its extent. We hope this is helpful and all the best with your situation, Bec

  • Pris says:

    Hi. I only recently became a landlord. The property I purchased had tenants living there for 8 years. They decided to move on and on final inspection the agents found water damage on my floorboards from a pot plant that had been sitting there. The tenant refuses to give any compensation saying that the house is over 10 years old. The house is solidly built and the floating floorboards still look great. The agents who have been so incompetent said that the floor is over 7 years so its wear and tear. Surely someone keeping plants on wooden floors and watering indoors is not wear and tear? I just dont know what my rights are. The tenant also was running a business from my property and the agents never told me about this which to me is a breach in my contract. I would really appreciate some advice on this. Thank you

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Pris, thanks for your questions. Water damage from pot plants is NOT wear and tear but accidental damage to be paid by the tenant. John Pye properties have a specific clause in the additional back page of the tenancy agreement specifying that pot plants are not to be kept on the floor. Was this in the Tenancy Agreement for your property? We recommend that you instruct the agent to: 1) Withhold the bond and 2) Obtain a quote for the repair and then deduct this from the bond. Our experience with floating floors tells us that there is a large variety of product quality on the market. Do you have the original documentation/brochures about the floating flooring you had installed? If so, find out the expected life from the specification. Over the years, we have inspected cheap floors which have failed within 5 years. Yet other floors look good after 15 years or more. In your case, if there is a lot of wear and tear from normal foot traffic on the floor, then you might wish to allow some concession but if the floor is almost as good as new, we do not see a reason to discount your claim against the tenant.

      Your point about the business would only be valid if there were customers coming and going all day contributing to wear and tear. If the tenant was to run an on-line business from home with no extra wear and tear, then I see no reason why this would have to be reported to the landlord. If the business contributed to wear and tear, the tenant has a duty to disclose this at the start of the tenancy OR if the tenant decided to start such a business during the tenancy, then they should have asked for permission. We hope this helps. If your property is anywhere in Sydney and you are open to having us manage this property for you, feel free to call either John Pye (0414 914 268) or myself (0410 541 866) at anytime. All the best with this, Bec Reid

  • Sarah says:

    Hello,
    I was just wondering what your opinion is on a very small cracked corner on a glass stovetop? the real estate agent is claiming it is damage and that the whole stove needs replacing. the crack in about 5 cm.

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Sarah, thanks for your question. How old is the stove top? How did the crack happen? Did you drop something heavy on it? By the sound of it, it could be considered accidental damage. However, dependent on the age of the stove top, you may be able to negotiate a depreciated amount for the replacement. All the best, Bec Reid.

  • Riddhi Kore says:

    The property that we were occupying had a small paint patch that was present on one of the walls when we moved in. We vacated the property last week and after the final inspection the landlord has not release out bond and is considering that patch as damage. The pictures in the condition report are not clear and do not cover that area. Since the paint patch was very small and not quiet visible we do not have a picture of that area from when we moved in. Please advise what can be done in this situation

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Riddhi, this is a good warning to both Landlords and Tenants. Be sure at the start of the tenancy, every mark or patch is recorded. Photos should be of sufficient detail and quality to show every blemish. The written report is detailed and should support the photos. The tenant has the responsibility to check every item and to indicate any patches or marks. Then there is no dispute and both the Landlord and the Tenant are protected by the diligence of the Agent as well as their own diligence in checking everything. We suggest in this instance, you should ask the Agent, what is the cost of repair and come to some agreement. It is very hard to prove your case if you don’t have the evidence. We hope this helps. All the best, Bec Reid

  • Rhys says:

    Hi Bec
    Just moved out. Got our final inspection
    – crack in a tile in the kitchen, would that be fare and tare? Wasn’t on the entry report.
    – apparently blown light bulb. Would that not be fare and tare ?
    We had damaged fly screens which would be accidentally damage

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Rhys, thanks for your questions. Firstly, did you crack the tile? If the tile cracked through pressure due to
      building movement or if it was poor workmanship, it is not your fault and the owner is responsible. If you struck it and cracked it, then it is your responsibility. Secondly, if you noted that all light bulbs were working at the start of the tenancy, then they should be working at the end. Hope this helps and all the best, Bec Reid

  • Garland says:

    Hi! we just left the apartment we were renting for 6 months because we found a better one. The problem is that we burnt a small portion of the carpet in our room, but the apartment is due for replacement of the carpet because of water leakage (but our room is not damage by water leakage). The carpet company says the insurance will cover only the part damaged by leakage. Is it possible to change the damage part except our room? if we didn’t burnt the carpet i believe they will still change the carpet in our room otherwise the carpet in our room will be different from the other room and living room. What can we do about it? thanks

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Garland, thanks for your question. If you damage the carpet then you are liable. Do you know how old the carpet
      is? See if you can work out a deal with the Landlord and take depreciation into account. NCAT has specific guidelines about depreciation of carpet. Give them a call and ask for the percentage once you know the age. All the best, Bec Reid

  • Ron says:

    Hello,
    I like to get your opinion for for these 2 scenarios with tenancy termination afer 6 yrs and 9 months:
    1) Vertical Blind 3.5m wide x 2m drop with 9 yrs approx age – the blind missing 4-5 slats and 2 broken hanger slats. tenant claimed hanger is brittle and the wind had flown away that missing slats. the unit is on level 4.
    2) localized carpet damage due to damp/mould – approx age 8 yrs – The damage is under tenant furniture against the wall that had not been moved for 6 yrs, the area is in living room and there is no visible sign from the outside of the furniture. this area is also behind a bathroom. Is tenant responsible for airing/ventilate this area?

    • Bec Reid says:

      Hi Ron, Thanks for your questions. Firstly, you may be right about blinds being old and being brittle. Without seeing the situation first hand, it is difficult to assess but I think you should make your stand as a ‘fair wear and tear’ issue. NCAT will have a depreciation factor for blinds. Suggest you call them if the Landlord insists on you paying for a replacement. Secondly, you have a building problem if there is mould behind or under your furniture. It appears that the shower is leaking through to the living room. Our opinion is that you should argue that it is not your problem and if there is damage to your furniture, you will claim compensation. Hope this helps, Bec Reid.

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