Want a full refund of your rental deposit?
26th July 2021 by Patricea Chow
4 Min ReadDid you know that if your place isn’t spick and span when it’s handed back to your landlord, your rental deposit can be forfeited? Lease agreements state that a unit must be returned in its original condition – something that can be achieved with moving-out cleaning.* The landlord can also forfeit the deposit just to have the unit cleaned and restored to its original condition. Why risk losing a few thousand dollars from one to two months’ rent, when a deep clean of the apartment will only cost a few hundred dollars?
Deep cleaning those hidden spots
You’ve spent your entire morning sweeping and mopping the floor, washing the bathroom and cleaning the windows. Will that do? Not necessarily. Moving out cleaning is different from regular day-to-day or weekly cleaning. Claudia Chua, Head of Operations (Specialised Cleaning) at Helpling, points out that some spots need deep cleaning before moving out. This is also more labour intensive.
She explains, “The kitchen has oil and grime, which takes ages to clean – especially if you don’t do regular cleaning or maintenance after every cook, or at least once a fortnight. Other grimy spots include light switches, floor skirting and doorknobs.”
Why can’t a helper do the moving-out cleaning?
If your tenancy includes weekly housekeeping or if you have a live-in housekeeper, it seems logical to get the maid to handle the move-out cleaning too. You might think, “I’ll just ask her to do a deep clean.”
However, it’s not so simple. Firstly, your regular housekeeper may not be able to perform all the tasks required of a moving-out cleaning due to safety concerns or a lack of tools. For example, they wouldn’t be able to provide a steam cleaner to remove stubborn kitchen grime or a jet spray machine to clean the floor grout.
Next, she may not be able to provide you with a proper invoice or state the correct type of service on the invoice, as it’s a different service provided. In this case, the landlord can refuse to accept this as fulfilling the terms and conditions of the tenancy agreement.
What’s included in a moving-out cleaning service?
At Helpling, depending on the size of the apartment, a team of three to five cleaners is deployed. They come with all the cleaning supplies – from window cleaners to ladders – that are needed for the moving-out cleaning to be done from top to bottom; plus, a supervisor will oversee the task. The cleaning is done in a systematic manner to ensure every nook and cranny is covered. As the service is charged by the size of the unit (square feet) and not by duration, any areas that are missed out on can be rectified on the spot.
Non-fabric furnishings such as cabinets and shelves are wiped on the interior and exterior. Walls are lightly dusted to avoid damaging the condition of the paint. For upholstery cleaning, curtain steaming or dry cleaning of fabric furnishing, Helpling has separate add-on services available as well.
Can this be done if the apartment has furniture?
If the unit came with furniture, the cleaners will wipe around the furniture. They won’t move heavy items around so as to reduce the risk of damaging the floor. Your personal belongings should already be moved out at least a day before the move-out cleaning session.
What customers say
How can you be sure that a moving out cleaning service is efficient and reliable? You can see what people who have used Helpling say about them on Google Reviews; at the time of writing, the company has been rated 4.7 stars out of five, with ratings from more than 1,600 customers. The reviews commonly highlight the professionalism and efficiency of the cleaning team. The company has also received the Expat Living Reader’s Choice Awards for Best Home Cleaning Service in 2019 and 2021.
Ready to leave the moving out cleaning to the professionals and get your full rental deposit back? Get a no-obligation quote from the Helpling team now. They’re also a home services concierge where you can speak to your dedicated account manager to secure reliable and experienced service providers for all your home needs. No more fussing over multiple contractors and quotes!
* In a Channel News Asia article, Victoria Lee Soo Pin, a counsel at IRB Law, noted that “tenancy agreements would usually state that a property must be cleaned to a professional standard when a tenant checks out. While this standard may vary according to the property’s original condition, this generally means cleaning to a ‘very high standard’.”
Written in collaboration with:Helplinghelpling.com.sg
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