The Entry Condition Report is arguably one of the most important documents of a tenancy. This document is completed at the beginning of the tenancy by the Lessor/Agent, and then the tenant; it records the exact condition of the property before the new tenant has moved in. At the end of the tenancy, the tenant is required to leave the property in the same condition it was given to them, according to this document.
This report needs to be so meticulous, ensuring every part of the property is mentioned on this report, inside and out, to avoid any problems at the end of the tenancy, and also in the beginning.
What do I mean when I say ‘and also in the beginning’? For example, a new tenant moves in and completes the report. They put on the report ‘garden full of weeds, oven dirty and dishwasher full of food’. There are two possible outcomes here – 1. The owner is going to have to pay to have these items rectified, as the previous tenant has more than likely been refunded their bond and has moved on, or 2. The owner does nothing about it, and when the tenant vacates, they can leave the weeds and the appliances dirty. Over the years, the filth will become permanent and will affect the function of the appliance, and the garden will be overtaken by weeds.
What do I mean when I say ‘at the end of a tenancy’? Let’s pretend there is a hole in the wall, and the agent/lessor forgot to mention in on the report, and the tenant either forget to hand the report in or they also forgot to mention the hole on the wall. When the tenant vacates, as it is not mentioned on the entry condition report, the tenant will be made to repair the hole and repaint the wall, because they can’t prove that it was already present when they moved in.
In the unfortunate event of an insurance claim being made – for theft or damages, even a break in to the property – the insurance company will request a copy of the report, and more than likely, if the items are not on the report, they will not be covered under insurance.
No matter how minor the item, everything needs to be documented. Would you or your agent know if the colour of the walls have changed? If the curtains were replaced? Or if the free-to-air point was replaced with a foxtel point, and now the Lessor is up for a new free to air point? Are there plugs in the property? There are so many minute details that can make or break the ease of entry/vacate for all parties, and if you’re not careful, a lot can be forgotten or overlooked.
Ensure that you’re extremely thorough when completing the Entry Report (attaching photos of the items you have listed on the report and the general condition of the property via a dvd is something we won’t do without), can save you a lot of hassle in the long run, and you’re less likely to be out of pocket.